22-year-old Italian Moto2 rider Romano Fenati has been fired by his team and has quit the sport completely after grabbing the brake of a competitor while racing at speeds of over 140 miles per hour.
Fenati, who was a rider for the Marinelli Snipers, was black-flagged at the San Marino GP for the incident with fellow rider Stefano Manzi. This event took place shortly after Manzi made a mistake whilst attempting to overtake Fenati, consequently running him off the track.
Talking about the incident afterward Manzi remarked that he felt like Fenati was trying to kill him. A statement he denies instead saying: “Mine was the gesture of someone who wanted to say: “Stop. Look, if I want to, I can make you fall off.”
The reactions to Fenati’s actions have naturally been vitriolic. MotoGP rider Cal Crutchlow said “when he walked back to the garage, the team should have just kicked him straight out the back. You can’t do this to another motorcycle racer. We are risking our lives enough.”
The punishment was initially not so severe, with stewards giving him a two-race ban. Since then however his team have dropped him and Forward Racing, the team who he has signed for next year, and for who Manzi currently races, has cancelled his contract.
As a result, Fenati says he is quitting the sport for good “that world is closed to me. I’ll not race anymore. It isn’t my world. There is too much injustice. I was wrong, that is true, but nobody cares about my pain”.
Speaking to Italian newspaper La Repubblica, Fenati said: “I was wrong, it’s true: I apologise to everyone. His apology was short lived though as he continued: “Do you want to see my helmet and my leathers? There is a long black strip, the Manzi rubber. He attacked me three times and he could have killed me too, as you say”.
“The last time I had it done to me was 500m before (the incident), then I thought ‘now I do the same, I’ll show you that I can be bad’ and maybe you will finally understand what it means”.