In 2008, the Italian motorcycle racer Marco “Sic” Simoncelli fulfilled a lifelong dream when he won the 250 cc Grand Prix World Championship on board a Gilera. In 2010, Simoncelli acquired a seat on the MotoGP Honda Gresini Team before switching to a factory motorcycle in 2011. This season, Sic came under fire for his aggressive driving style, but he also came out on top.
With two pole positions and his first podium in the premier class at the GP of the Czech Republic, the number 58 took the best second place of her career at the Australian Grand Prix. However, the meteoric rise of the driver crashed at the Malaysian Grand Prix on October 23, 2011. On lap two of the race, Sic lost traction at Turn 11 and sent his bike into a low-side crash. Unfortunately, Simoncelli pulled out all the stops to save the fall and get him back into the trajectory of other riders.
The American Colin Edwards and Simoncelli’s good friend Valentino Rossi then hit the ailing driver. Less than an hour after the accident, medical staff pronounced Simoncelli dead from injuries sustained on the track. His tragic death has rocked the motorcycle racing world for years, but a new graphic novel celebrates the life and achievements of the fallen racer.
Written by Fabio Fagnani and illustrated by Noemi Parente, the graphic novel 58 turns Marco Simoncelli’s story into a fairy tale. Told from Little Marco’s perspective, the fictionalized biography follows the development of the young racing driver into a world-class racing driver. Under the guidance of Sic, Little Marco’s adult alter ego, the main character learns how to develop his talent, courage and determination on the racetrack.
With Simoncelli’s 10th anniversary approaching, there’s no better way to remember the excitement and sincerity he’s brought to the MotoGP paddock. For just € 20 ($ 23), 58 is also an affordable addition to any graphic novel / book collection. We may know Simoncelli’s story as a tragedy, but 58 transforms that tale into a fairytale ending.