Fausto Gresini, double world champion and long-standing Grand Prix team manager, died this morning as a result of complications arising from a COVID-19 infection.
The 60-year-old Italian was being treated for COVID-19 in the intensive care unit of the Carlo Alberto Pizzardi hospital in Bologna, Italy.
Gresini had been diagnosed with COVID-19 shortly before Christmas 2020. His condition worsened sufficiently for him to be admitted to hospital shortly after Christmas.
From there, his condition grew worse, occasionally showing only minor improvements, but the disease caused severe damage to his lungs, meaning he required help breathing for long periods of time.
The toll from the disease mounted up, Gresini eventually succumbing to the complications arising from COVID-19.
Fausto Gresini was born in Imola, Italy, in 1961, and began racing at the age of 17, in an era where racers started at a much later age.
He joined the Grand Prix paddock in 1983, racing an MBA, a Morbidelli 125. Gresini would go on to win two World Championships, in 1985 and 1987, and take 21 Grand Prix victories in the 125cc class.
The Italian remained a 125cc specialist, never leaving the smallest Grand Prix class.
After his racing career ended before the start of the 1994 season, Gresini turned to team management, starting the eponymous Gresini Racing team in 1997.
The Italian had major successes, winning championships with Daijiro Kato in the 250 class in 2001, with Toni Elias in Moto2 in 2010, and with Jorge Martin in Moto3 in 2018.
He also had major success in the MotoGP class, winning races with Sete Gibernau and Marco Melandri.
Gresini had run the Aprilia factory MotoGP team for the Italian manufacturer since their official return to the class in 2015. Fausto Gresini was team manager for the operation, while Romano Albesiano and Massimo Rivola ran the Aprilia side of the organization.
Gresini’s career was tinged with tragedy. Gresini was team manager for Daijiro Kato when the Japanese rider was killed at Suzuka in 2003.
Gresini also had Marco Simoncelli as a rider in MotoGP in 2011, when the Italian was killed during the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang.
Everyone at Asphalt & Rubber sends their deepest condolences to the family, friends, and team colleagues of Fausto Gresini.
Source: Gresini Racing Team