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Marco Simoncelli’s #58 Officially Retired from MotoGP


The tragic death of 24-year-old MotoGP racer Marco Simoncelli in 2011 led to the renaming of the Misano Circuit to “Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli”, and has now resulted in the retiring of his official #58 from further use in any MotoGP championship class unless authorized by his family.

Simoncelli was a good friend of Valentino Rossi, and considered him a mentor. Rossi is wearing special Dainese leathers this weekend honoring Simoncelli.  The two are pictured together above.

See more of MD’s great photography:



  1. VLJ says:

    Regardless of what Rossi is saying now, I think it’s a given that MotoGP will retire the number ’46’ once he retires from the sport. Kevin Schwantz was so popular that the Powers That Be simply had to immortalize number ’34’ upon his retirement, and Schwantz’s worldwide popularity wasn’t even in the same universe as that of VR46.

  2. ROXX says:

    It would have been great to see him and Marquez on the track at the same time. They both have that ‘never back down, caution be damned’ style that makes for some exciting racing.
    It really is a shame he’s no longer here….

  3. mickey says:

    Fitting just like Kato’s number 74 and Tomizawas number # 48 however there have been dozens on racers killed in GP competition.Sarrinen, Passolini and Pons for example Wonder how they choose who’s numbers to retire?

    • MGNorge says:

      Maybe I’m just suspect of too many intentions, but popularity? Number of requests made by spectators?

      • Tyler says:

        Maybe they mentioned something in the article about who might have pushed for this honor? Was he close to someone who is considered a major player in the organization?
        OK, tin foil hat is now off.

        I guess as in every sport there are only so many numbers that can be retired until another rising star comes along who wants it. How many racers come up through the ranks with the same number plate throughout their career, and suddenly they reach the premier calls and FIM tells them “Oh sorry, that number is retired above this level, so forget about your lucky number superstition and choose another plate.” All that being said, it would have been interesting to see him continue to race these past few years, how would the field look today? Would we be watching him and Marquez trading championships instead of MM & JLo? Would JLo be riding a red bike already? Would his ascension have driven Rossi into retirement? Will Lassie get help for Timmy before its too late? I guess we’ll never know.

      • Norm G. says:

        re: “Number of requests made by spectators?”

        or maybe a single request made by the only spectators that count…? ie. the Parents.

        don’t know this for a fact or anything, just going by the blurb in the article that states authorization must be given by the FAMILY for any future use.

        this similar to VR46, the number more or less (yes I know it’s a number) becomes part of the individual’s personal “brand identity” therefore it fell under “family control” when he passed, no different than how any other piece of personal property or “tangible goods” Simo owned would’ve gone to his Estate. just spit-balling, you know i’m good for this if nothing else.

        • Curly says:

          Simo did seem headed for greatness and it was a sad day for MotoGP when he passed.

          On numbers though I wonder if the Took has any theories about rider numerology? 46 must have some sinister meaning.

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