PHIL READ has died aged 83, his family have confirmed.
The seven-time motorcycle GP world champion passed away peacefully in his sleep yesterday.
Legendary racer Phil Read has passed away
Read remained involved in the sport as he got older
In a statement posted online, the Read family paid tribute to the much-beloved former racer dubbed by fans as the “Prince of Speed”.
It read: “It is with incredible sadness that the Read family reports the passing of Phil Read MBE while peacefully asleep on the morning of October 6th, 2022, at his home in Canterbury, England.
“Phil is best known for winning Yamaha’s first world championship title in 1964 with four more Yamaha-mounted titles including one fought as a privateer, plus two premier class 500cc world championships in 1973 and 1974 for the Italian MV Agusta marque.
“Often a controversial and outspoken figure, his prolific racing career included 52 FIM Grand Prix wins and eight wins at the iconic Isle of Man TT Races. In 2002 he was granted the status of “MotoGP Legend” by Dorna.
“Phil is survived by his sons Michael, Graham, Phil Jr, Roki and daughter Esme’. Further details on any public celebrations of life will be shared.”
Following the sad news of Read’s death, Moto GP paid tribute – writing: “All at MotoGP are saddened to learn of the passing of Phil Read
“A 7-time World Champion, Phil helped to elevate our sport to a new level
“His impact on the motorcycle racing community will never be forgotten. Our thoughts are with his family and friends. Rest in peace, Phil.”
Former GP rider Steve Parrish wrote: “So sad to hear the passing of Phil Read. One of the most talented riders to come from the UK.
“I will never forget him coming to my house, with glamorous wife Madeline.
“In a Rolls corniche, it was like Queen had arrived.”
MotoGP star Joan Mir added: “Rest in peace, legend.”
One fan tweeted: “RIP Phil Read. One of the greatest and hardest motorcycle racers of all time.
“What a character, in both good and bad ways. A minutes silence will be required at Phillip Island next week.”
A second posted: “I got to spend time with Phil these past 15 years having fun at classic events. Phil was one of the greats of all time! R.I.P Phil Read.”
A third added: “So sorry to hear that the legend Phil Read passed away, he made me laugh, wasn’t PC at all and he upset many without meaning to, which made me like him all the more.”
Read hoists the trophy aloft after winning the British Junior Championship race in 1963
The outspoken star became one Britain’s most successful ever racers