Danish driver Simonsen killed in high speed crash at Le Mans 24-hour race
June 23, 2013 -- Updated 0713 GMT (1513 HKT)
Allan Simonsen died as a result of injuries in a high-speed crash at the Le Mans 24-hour race in France.
- Fatality at Le Mans 24-hour endurance race
- Danish driver Allan Simonsen dies after high speed crash
- Simonsen was driving an Aston Martin
- His team had been in pole position in the GTE-AM class at Le Mans
(CNN) -- Danish driver Allan Simonsen died in a high-speed crash at the famous Le Mans 24 Hour endurance race, organizers said Saturday.
Simonsen, 34, one of the most experienced sports car drivers in the world, was competing for Aston Martin in the GTE-Am class.
He was at the wheel -- less than 10 minutes into the race -- when his car left the circuit on the Tertre Rouge corner and crashed heavily into the safety barriers.
Simonsen was immediately treated at the scene before being taken to the circuit's medical center where he died shortly afterwards, officials said.
The Automobile Club de l'Ouest wishes to express its great sadness following this incident, and extends its deepest condolences to the family and those close to Allan Simonsen
Statement by Le Mans organizers
"The Automobile Club de l'Ouest wishes to express its great sadness following this incident, and extends its deepest condolences to the family and those close to Allan Simonsen," read a statement.
Simonsen was competing for the seventh time in the Le Mans 24-race and his teammates were fellow Danes Christoffer Nygaard and Kristian Poulsen.
The trio had won their class in the season opener for the World Endurance Championship at Silverstone and claimed pole position for Le Mans in their category in qualifying earlier this week.
After the accident, the race was halted for an hour before resuming with Simonsen's Aston Martin teammates -- they have five entries -- still racing despite the tragedy.
"At the specific request of his family, the team will continue to participate in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in tribute to Allan," read a statement on the official Aston Martin Racing website.
"On behalf of all of us at Aston Martin Racing, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies and condolences to the individuals, and families whose friends or loved ones were involved in today's terrible tragedy," said the team's managing director John Gaw.
Formula One star Jenson Button gave his reaction on Twitter: "Allan Simonsen RIP.such a tragic loss. A true fighter & a true racer. Safety is something we need 2 improve on in Motorsport."
This year's Le Mans marks the 90th anniversary of the race and its 81st edition on the Circuit de la Sarthe, which is situated two hours south west of of the French capital Paris.
Part of complete coverage on
Track the buzz of the 2014 Formula One season, race by race, with all the latest social reaction from motorsport experts.
April 18, 2014 -- Updated 1113 GMT (1913 HKT)
Too weak. Can't handle the pressure. Susie Wolff has heard it all -- but she is determined to become the first female F1 driver in 20 years.
CNN's Amanda Davies visits the headquarters of Mercedes, the dominant team in Formula One this season.
March 15, 2014 -- Updated 0108 GMT (0908 HKT)
The big winners of this Formula One season could be road drivers rather than F1 racers, according to one former world champion.
March 14, 2014 -- Updated 1730 GMT (0130 HKT)
The Williams team welcomes the biggest rule changes to Formula One cars for a generation.
March 13, 2014 -- Updated 1916 GMT (0316 HKT)
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton sums up the dawn of a new Formula One era in three juicy words -- weird, mind-blowing and challenging.
March 12, 2014 -- Updated 1216 GMT (2016 HKT)
Formula One is taking another step in its techno evolution this season, which could be more unpredictable than it has been for a long time.
February 24, 2014 -- Updated 1736 GMT (0136 HKT)
Jann Mardenborough on the similarities and differences between driving a race on a video game and driving a real F1 car.
February 22, 2014 -- Updated 1226 GMT (2026 HKT)
How Russian president Vladimir Putin helped turn a muddy hole in the ground into a $400 million futuristic grand prix track in Sochi.
February 21, 2014 -- Updated 0013 GMT (0813 HKT)
Vilified by the the international community for his government's attitude on gay rights, Russian president Vladimir Putin has found an ally.
March 13, 2014 -- Updated 1613 GMT (0013 HKT)
He is Formula One's undisputed No. 1, and next season Sebastian Vettel will have proof of that fact emblazoned on his Red Bull.
December 4, 2013 -- Updated 1633 GMT (0033 HKT)
A new era of F1 looms large on the horizon in 2014, but what do the new rules mean for how we watch the sport? Get up to speed here.
October 17, 2013 -- Updated 1056 GMT (1856 HKT)
Explore our interactive of one of F1's most important and complicated pieces of kit.
Today's five most popular stories