Risk vs. reward: street racing in a former Portuguese colony
TTrue to their street-circuit dominance, the British have won the Macau Grand Prix 36 times in 51 races. America’s lone winner is 1993 Grand Prix world champion Kevin Schwantz, who won in 1988. When he returned years later to perform parade laps at this course across the water from Hong Kong, he questioned his earlier decision to race.
Because, like any street course, the risks are very real and barely off the racing line. The unforgiving nature of 3.8-mile street circuit took its toll this year, with 31-year-old Daniel Hegarty succumbing to injuries sustained in a high-speed crash during the race. There was a podium ceremony, but without music or champagne as Irish racer Glenn Irwin was credited with victory after racing was halted.
Any loss hits the community hard, but even in the face of tragedy, there are no mass retirements from this peculiar and terrifyingly beautiful niche of road racing.
Dean Harrison blasts his unseen Kawasaki between the barriers during free practice.