The FIM, which is the governing body of motorcycle racing, made the announcement on Tuesday evening that the Dutch rider had passed away as a result of head injuries sustained in a collision involving multiple riders on Saturday during the opening race at the Portuguese track at Turn 14.
The accident brought about an instant stop to the race, which created a delay in the remainder of the day’s schedule. As a direct result of this delay, the lap count for the inaugural World Superbike race of the weekend in the afternoon was reduced from 20 to 14.
MTM Kawasaki rider Steeman was taken to the medical centre before being flown by helicopter to the hospital in the adjacent city of Faro. Unfortunately, he would pass just a few days after being admitted to that facility.
The following is an excerpt from a statement that was issued by Steeman’s family: “As the father of a motorbike racer, something that has always given you the reason for concern has really taken place. This final race was beyond our Champion’s ability to win.
“In spite of the unimaginable loss and grief, we are incredibly glad to share with you the news that our hero, via the donation of his organs after his demise, was able to save the lives of five other people.
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“We would want to express our gratitude to everyone for the manner in which you have conducted yourselves while staying with us over the past few days. Our dear Victor will be greatly missed by all of us.”
After making his debut in 2018 as a substitute rider, Steeman competed in World Supersport 300 for the first time as a full-time rider for the first time in 2019, claiming two pole positions on his way to finishing fifth in the standings.
In 2021, he made his comeback to the series after sitting out the previous year. That year, he won for the first time at Most and ended up placing 10th overall in the championship.
After making the switch from KTM machinery to Kawasaki for the 2022 season, he established himself as a title contender with victories at Assen, Most, Magny-Cours, and Barcelona. These victories were sufficient to earn him the posthumous position of runner-up in the championship behind Alvaro Diaz.
The death of Steeman is the second to occur in World Supersport 300 in a little over a year, the first being that of Dean Berta Vinales, who passed away following a crash in 2021 at Jerez. Steedman’s death is the most recent.
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