NOVEMBER 8, 1999
IT has been only a few weeks since the CART series had to face the death of Gonzalo Rodriguez at Laguna Seca. Now tragedy has struck again with Greg Moore, one of the stars of the series, being killed in an accident in the final round of the CART championship at Fontana, in California.
Moore made no secret of his ambition to one day become a Grand Prix driver. He visited several Grands Prix as a guest of Mercedes-Benz but said that he wanted to win the CART title first.
Moore shot to prominence in 1994 when he became the youngest ever winner in Indy Lights. The following season he won 10 of the 12 Indy Lights races and the title. He moved to CART in 1996 and won the first of his five victories the following year at Milwaukee - becoming at 22 the youngest driver to win a CART race. His second victory came immediately afterwards at Detroit and was followed by wins in Rio de Janeiro and Michigan in 1998 and at Miami at the start of this season.
The event at Fontana was his final race for Player's Forsythe Racing. He was due to join Penske Racing on a three year contract next season. Moore started from the back of the grid, following a motorscooter accident in the paddock on Saturday which left him with a broken bone in his right hand. He had forced his way up to 10th place in the first four laps but then Richie Hearn crashed and there was a caution period for five laps. When the race was restarted Moore got only as far as Turn Two of the California Speedway before losing control. The car spun sideways onto the grass, dug a wheel into the turf and flipped. It was upside down in the air when it hit the infield retaining wall. The Reynard was launched into a series of rolls, which tore off the engine, gearbox and wheels. The monocoque remained intact but it came to rest upside down on the grass with Moore trapped beneath it. He was airlifted to the Loma Linda University Hospital but was declared dead on arrival. The Canadian driver - from Maple Ridge in British Columbia - was only 24.
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