49-year-old Russian touring car driver Yuri Semenchev has died this weekend in a crash in the sixth round of the Russian Racing Championship at the Smolensk Ring.
49-year-old Semenchev, from Dolgoprudniy, was defending his position in the race, when on lap two he skidded at the last bend of Smolensk Ring, which is the fastest bend on the circuit, after some suspected minor contact with another driver. He tried to recover his sliding Honda Civic, but crashed at high speed, driver-side into the guard-rail, and then rolled onto the left side of the car. The force of the impact knocked him unconscious immediately.
The rescue crew managed to extract him from the wreck and put him on life support, after which Semenchev was airlifted to hospital, where he died from his injuries a few hours later.
Semenchev joined the racing scene in 2010, and in 2011 he joined the RRC, driving a Super Production Civic Mk.7. Over his short career he made progress from back of the field and became a strong midfielder of the SP class with 4 podium finishes to his tally. He was never shy to smile and those who knew him say he was likable and very positive person.
The TouringCarTimes team offer their condolences to the friends and family of Yuri Semenchev at this sad time.
This report was contributed by Gregory Golyshev, a motorsport photographer for the WTCC and RRC.