Amateur motocross racer Chase Alessandro, 19, died on Wednesday after sustaining injuries Saturday during the Lucas Oil Westcoast Classic series at the Lucas Oil MX Park [formerly Starwest MX] in Perris, Calif.
Medics on site did not detect a pulse upon arrival on the scene, according to reports from local media, and Alessandro was kept on life support for several days after the crash. The Riverside County Sheriff-Coroner's office has confirmed Alessandro's death but had not released further details from its investigation as of Friday morning.
The Lucas Oil MX Park issued the following statement on Wednesday: "As you all know, motocross is a dangerous sport that we all love to do, but we also know the risks we take when we get on the bike. This past Saturday we had a rider down and he was transported to the hospital. After giving it his best fight for a few days in the hospital, rider 712 Chase Alessandro made his final jump to heaven. Chase was a great kid with a great family and the motocross industry has suffered a great loss."
Alessandro had a reputation as one of the park's hardest-charging regulars and fiercest competitors, and was chasing dreams of pro racing, but he reportedly had a reputation for going too hard: Saturday's crash was his second major crash on the track in the past two months. In August he was tossed from his bike and injured in a crash in the track's rhythm section, but was able to return for his second moto later that day.
The last two rounds of the Westcoast Classic series, Saturday and Sept. 29, have been dedicated as "Race for Chase" memorial races.
"In a tragedy like this, the motocross industry comes together as a family to show support," the statement from Lucas Oil MX Park reads. "As the motocross family that we are here at Lucas Oil MX, we will be donating our proceeds from the next two Saturdays to the Alessandro family. Come show your support as Chase would have done for his motocross family. You will always be a part of our Lucas Oil MX family, Chase. Rest in peace 712!"