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Marco Burnelli, the Italian Ducati rider in the 1996 European Superbike Championship, was killed during the Campionati Assoluti d'Italia meeting at Monza, on Monday, 08 April 1996.
While negotiating the Curva Grande at about 250 km/h (155 mi/h) on the 8th lap of the 600 SuperSport race, Burnelli who was in third position, lost control of his bike and fell down on the right side. He slid in the middle of the track, ending in the path of another Ducati ridden by Mauro Mastrelli of Rome, who could not avoid impact.
Both the injured men were taken by rescuers to San Gerardo Hospital at Monza. Shortly later Burnelli succumbed to massive neck and abdominal injuries. Mastrelli who had lost his helmet in the accident, suffered extensive head injuries and was in a coma for almost one and a half month. The accident left him paralyzed from the waist down.
After the tragedy, the race was immediately suspended and positions freezed at sixth lap, Burnelli was therefore classified in third place. The remainder of the day's motorcycle events were canceled.
The first newspaper articles indicated that Burnelli crashed after slipping on oil. This was not confirmed by the official investigation of the crash. It happened at the very same place as Jarno Saarinen's and Renzo Pasolini's fatal accident in 1973.
Campionati Assoluti D'Italia
Monza Grand Prix
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