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Gareth Roberts dies after high-speed crash

Updated: Saturday, 16 Jun 2012 17:45

Roberts dies after high-speed crash

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Welsh rally co-driver Gareth Roberts has been killed following a crash in the Targa Florio rally on Sicily, the organisers have said.

The 24-year-old, from Carmarthen, was navigator in a Peugeot 207 being driven by Irishman Craig Breen which crashed on the eighth stage of the event.

Emergency crews attended the scene but Roberts died as a result of his injuries the series organisers, the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, reported on its website.

As a mark of respect the IRC called off the remainder of the event.

A statement from IRC said: "On stage eight of Targa Florio-Rally Internazionale Di Sicilia there was an accident involving car number 15, Craig Breen and Gareth Roberts, which resulted in the stage being stopped to enable medical crews to attend the scene.

"Despite their best efforts, Gareth Roberts succumbed to his injuries and the remainder of the event has been cancelled as a mark of respect. Craig Breen was unhurt in the accident. No spectators were involved."

The statement continued: "Intercontinental Rally Challenge promoter Eurosport Events joins the IRC community in offering its sincere condolences to Gareth's family and friends who are in our thoughts at this very sad time."

Breen and Roberts were lying sixth in the rally after seven stages when the accident took place.

IRC Manager Jean-Pierre Nicolas said: "It's a very sad accident that reminds us that motorsport is dangerous: accidents can affect both driver and co-driver in rallying.

"As the president of the Automobile Club Palermo, Antonio Marasco, said after the accident, the Targa Florio is an event where many great champions have left us in the past, and sadly this has happened again.

"The death of a 24-year-old young man at the start of a fantastic career is always a tragedy.

"From the start of this year, together with Craig Breen, Gareth has put in some excellent performances and the crew really got themselves noticed.

"There's no doubt in my mind that these performances would have got even better.

"At this terrible time, I'm thinking very much of Gareth's family, to whom all of us at Eurosport Events pass on our sincere condolences."

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