Motocross rider dies following crash at Blaxhall event

Tom Pattison, who died while competing at Blaxhall Circuit on September 13

Tom Pattison, who died while competing at Blaxhall Circuit on September 13 - Credit: citizenside.com

The motocross community are tonight in shock after the death of a young rider at Blaxhall earlier today.

Tom Pattison, who died while competing at Blaxhall Circuit on September 13

Tom Pattison, who died while competing at Blaxhall Circuit on September 13 - Credit: citizenside.com

The rider, a man in his 20s, fell from a bike just before 1pm.

Police were called to the scene as was an air ambulance, but the victim was pronounced dead by crews at the event.

Photographer Peter Cutts, who was at the scene, said: “I was taking photos further down from where the crash happened.

“I saw the red flag, which is not normal. At that moment I knew it must be serious.

Blaxhall Motocross track, pictured during the British Championship earlier this year.

Blaxhall Motocross track, pictured during the British Championship earlier this year.

“The riders were stopped, then the ambulance whizzed in and the helicopter flew in.

“The place just feel silent, it was horrible. Everyone knew it was bad and people were obviously very upset. The staff cleared the stadium quite quickly.”

Most Read

The man was competing in the penultimate round of the Eastern Centre Motocross Championship, hosted by Woodbridge Motocross Club (Woodbridge DMCC). The event was contested by nearly 160 riders over 12 races.

Charlie Ralph, club membership secretary, said: “Sadly we had a fatal accident here today, the meet was immediately abandoned.

The motocross track at Blaxhall.

The motocross track at Blaxhall.

“Fortunately it is a very rare occurrence in the sport. He came off the bike during a race.”

The rider was not a member of Woodbridge DMCC.

Lyn Berwick, club secretary, said: “It was a dreadful accident we have had today. It was a racing incident and no one else was hurt.”

Fatalities in the sport are extremely rare, as former double British motocross champion from Ipswich, Jake Nicholls explained.

“I can’t remember the last time this sort of awful accident happened,” the 25-year-old said.

“The bikes weigh over 100kgs and you have 40 riders in a race, it’s a dangerous sport and we all know that.

“My heart goes out to the family of the lad, it’s the ultimate sacrifice doing a sport he loved so much. The people at Blaxhall will all be devastated as well. They run everything by the book there and do everything right.

“The motocross family is close-knit and it hits us all. But the nature of the sport is what it is and as riders we have to carry on.”

He added on Twitter that he was “devastated for all involved”.

The death is not being treated as suspicious, and police will now prepare a file for the coroner.

Any witnesses are asked to contact Suffolk Constabulary on 101.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter