Eight-year-old race car driver Anita Board has passed away from her injuries following a crash on November 12 that initially left her in critical condition.
Mandurah police released a statement on November 12 saying that Board had crashed into a cement barrier at 12:20 p.m. while she was test driving her car at the Kwinana Motorplex. At the end of the track, she failed to stop and crashed into the barrier where she was left with life-threatening injuries. She was brought to Princess Margaret Hospital but passed away on November 13.
The West Australian reported on November 13 that Board’s father, Ian, called the death a “one in a million event.”
“Our baby girl Anita had a bright, bubbly personality and her smile was infectious. Her passion for motorsport, drag racing and being here as a family with her sister at the track was the highlight of her life,” he said. “We were blessed to have had her for eight years and she’s going to be forever missed.”
He went on to thank the drag racing community for their support and explained that they chose drag racing for both their daughters because they believed it was the safest option for them.
“We chose drag racing because we believed it was the safest form of motorsport that we could allow our girls to do. The history speaks for itself,” he said. “Sadly this one in a million event happened to us, to our little girl.”
Sport and Recreation Minister Mick Murray released a statement on November 13 stating his condolences to the family and asking for people to respect the family’s privacy at this time.
Murray also stated that “Junior competition drag racing – which includes ages eight to 16 – will be suspended at Perth Motorplex until the investigation is complete. The suspension of this category of motorsport activity allows for a full investigation to be carried out into the nature of the accident. The State Government will wait until the details of the accident are clear following the investigation before taking any further action.”
During his statement, Mr. Board added, “We’d again like to thank everyone for the love and support. It’s not just the junior drag racing that will be affected by this, but junior speedway, junior bikes, motocross, all those sports from people who want to be negative and just don’t understand.” He also said that he wanted children to continue racing and while he understands that changes need to take place, he acknowledged that nothing major needed to happen.
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