As the racing world in America wakes up this, there will tragic news greeting them.
Sometime around 12:00 AM EDT, or 4:00 AM GMT, Sean Edwards passed away in violent wreck that literally exploded and burned a 35 foot (12 meter) section of tire barrier. He was riding as passenger in a Porsche 997 in an event where people could pay money and get taught to drive the track and the car by a professional, whom today just happened to be Sean Edwards. The driver of the car is also near death.
Sean Edwards was one of GT racing's most promising talents. The young Briton was only 26 at the time of his passing. After going up the British Formula Ford and Formula Renault UK ladder that every British driver goes up, he went down the GT path, winning 3 times in 10 starts to claim FIA GT3 title in 2006. In 2007, he ran the FIA GT championship, finishing on the podium once, before sliding into what would be his niche, top-level GT3 racing.
Edwards switched to the Porsche Supercup, where he won twice and finished 5th in points. In 2009, he didn't have a full-time ride. It was 2010 when he started to bloom. He took his 3rd Porsche Supercup win and finished 6th in points. The next year, he won another race with 4th in points, as well taking 4th at the prestigious 24 Hours of Dubai. He would never lose that race again.
But it was 2012 that is talent came full circle. Sean Edwards took the Porsche Supercup race at Monaco and won the 24 Hours of Dubai. His first run at the 24 Hours of Nurburgring ended on lap 4. In 2013, it was apparent that Sean Edwards would someday win the 24 Hours of Le Mans. He claimed his second straight 24 Hours of Dubai and the 24 Hours of Nurburgring, becoming one of the few drivers to ever win to two major 24-hour races in the same year. He was dominating the Porsche Supercup as he had won 3 of the 7 races going into the finale double-header. In his three career ALMS races, he took a pole, two fast laps, and two podiums
Unfortunately, that double-header must go on without him. If his rivals falter, he would join Jochen Rindt as drivers to win a major FIA title posthumously. Here's hoping he wins that title and that a young driver is inspired by Sean Edwards and decide to go GT racing. It is tragically ironic that when you look at Wikipedia or watch a race on TV, only the overall win matters, but when you talk to those in the sport, like the ALMS or the WEC, winning GTE is almost equal to winning LMP1. As a result, few recognized the insane GT talent Sean Edwards had, and hopefully now they will when people see just how much he did in so little time.
Sean Edwards, rest in peace.
Opinions expressed in blogs are those of the individual bloggers and do not necessarily represent the views of racing-reference.info.