The world of motorcycling has rallied round to pay tributes to Frenchman Steven Lenoir, who was killed following a crash in qualifying at a race in France on Monday. He was taken to Lille hospital but died of his injuries.
The race was cancelled after the news broke, and the riders there paid tribute with a slow parade lap in his honour. An emotional video of it can be seen on Facebook.
Lenoir had spent many seasons in the UK, culminating in winning the British MX2 championship in 2015. He led the British MX1 championship this year until the last round at Hawkstone Park where he dropped to second in the series.
Many of his rivals, friends and motorcyclists have paid tribute to him. Here are just some of the tributes.
World champ Tim Gajser uploaded a photo of Steven with Angel’s Wings and it said on it: “Ride In Paradise. RIP.”
Former world champ Romain Febvre said: “I have no words … Steven Lenoir was a friend, a racer, I knew him for many years after racing with him in 85cc. Courage to all his family! R.I.P. Steven NO WORDS ….”
Britain’s last world champion Jamie Dobb said: “Devastating news 😢 regarding @stevenlenoir685 My thoughts are with his family and friends at this terrible time. God speed Steven.”
Motocross des Nations winner Paul Malin said: “My thoughts are with his family, his friends and his loved ones. A truly sad day for the motocross community.”
Former world champ Jordi Tixier said: “No words … hours of motorcycle ridden together from our youngest age in 85cc. You will be missed a lot. And we will never forget you.”
British champ Tommy Searle said: “Truly unbelievable and heartbreaking to hear the news today.. One of the nicest, hardworking people you could ever wish to meet!! I Had a lot of good days in the Gym and at the Track with You Ride in Peace mate, we will never forget you.”
Former British champ Shaun Simpson said: “Sad Sad Sad times for the motorcycle community this last couple weeks, this time one of motocross’s true good guys has been taken from us. Seen this guy at work & was always giving 100% with whatever wheels he had underneath him. RIP dude, you’ll be sadly missed.”
GP star Max Anstie said: “Can not believe we have lost such a great guy and great competitor. Thoughts are with everyone close to him. British motocross won’t be the same.”
MX2 GP star Ben Watson said: “Thanks for the great battles Steven, rest in peace #685”
British championship rival Harri Kullas said: “Very sad day! Always friendly guy in the paddock and great rider on track! R.I.P Steven Lenoir.”
Ex-EMX champ Mel Pocock said: “Words can not describe the feeling of loosing a mate, a rival, a training partner and true inspiration to all that looked up to steve. Mine and Jord’s holiday training club will sorely miss the team leader. Rip Frenchiie.”
British MX1 championship riderAshley Wilde said: Can’t believe I’m writing this 😢 You have been a great competitor over the years and you will be sadly missed. R.I.P Steven Lenoir #685 xxx”
Suzuki’s Nev Bradshaw said: “Shocking news about Steven Lenoir! So young. So sad. Condolences to all his friends and family.”
British championship rider Lewis Tombs said: “Lost for words! Thoughts are with all Stevens family, friends and HR Kawasaki team. An honour to stand on the podium with you, ride in peace #685.”
MXGP rider Valentin Guillod said: “No words😞! Having fun, laughing, spending good times on the GP, fighting for a title in 2010. Never forget you Steven. Thought to the family.”
Yamaha team manager Rob Hooper said: “Such sad news hearing the passing of French Motocross rider Steven Lenior, our thoughts are with his family, friends & fans. Ride in Peace Steven. #685”
Honda MX2 star Martin Barr said: “I’m lost for words, he was an awesome guy on and off the track and always had time for a chat! Thoughts are with his family and friends.”
World Superbike racer Alex Lowes said: “Gutted to hear about the passing of @stevenlenoir685 spent plenty of hours in the gym @kfgfitness with you and really admired how you went about your business on and off the bike! Always giving everything you had. You did yourself proud, You will be greatly missed! Thoughts go out to your family and friends. RIP mate.”