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Friday, October 11, 2013

Maria de Villota ~ loses her fight at 33 - she is no more

Of the very few English novels, I read – I liked - Digital Fortress, a techno-thriller novel written by Dan Brown.  It was about  government surveillance of electronically stored information on the private lives of citizens, and the possible civil liberties and ethical implications using such technology. One of the main characters is Ensei Tankado who puts in a complex code the super computer Transltr could not break…… ; Tankado dies in Seville, of what appears to be a heart attack; and the hero travels to find and recover a ring that Tankado was wearing when he died. ………………

Seville,  is the capital and largest city of the autonomous community of Andalusia and the province of Seville. It is situated on the plain of the River Guadalquivir. The Seville harbour, located about 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the Atlantic Ocean, is the only river port in Spain. Sad to read about another death [this time real and untimely one at that]

There are not many who have achieved before they are 33 and very few woman in some fields – Car racing being one…. María de Villota Comba,  daughter of former Formula One driver Emilio de Villota was one who rose to fame with her F1 debut.   Born in Madrid, She competed in numerous racing series, including the World Touring Car Championship and ADAC Procar Series. In August 2009, she signed with Atlético Madrid to race for the remainder of the season in the Superleague Formulaopen wheel racing series. She remained with the Atlético Madrid team until the series folded in 2011. On 18 August 2011, the Lotus Renault GP team confirmed reports that de Villota had made her Formula One test debut in aRenault R29 at the Paul Ricard Circuit, and that her management was in talks to secure her a test driver seat in the future.

In July 2o12, de Villota was involved in a testing accident at Duxford Aerodrome whilst carrying out straight-line testing for Marussia; her first time in the car. Her car collided with a stationary truck at the end of a test run when it had just returned to the service area. Initial eye witnesses estimated the car was travelling at between 50 and 65 km/h (31 and 40 mph) when it crashed.  It took an hour for her to be removed from the car and she was taken to Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridgeshire, England, with life-threatening head and facial injuries. She lost her right eye in that accident. 

De Villota made her first public appearance since the accident in October, giving an exclusive interview to a magazine and then hosting a press conference for the general media. Now on 11/10/2013, exactly one year from her first public appearance after her testing accident, Spanish media reported that de Villota had been found dead in her Seville hotel room; an  autopsy reportedly confirmed de Villota died of natural causes after suffering a cardiac arrest, with all indications that the underlying cause may have been due to a 'detachment of brain mass' as a result of her 2012 accident.

At the time of her death, de Villota was scheduled to participate as a speaker at the Seville Fundación Lo Que De Verdad Importa (LQDVI) conference and was due to launch her autobiography Life Is a Gift on 14 October.

F1 teams and drivers have expressed their shock at the news of her death. Maria De Villota was not only admired for competing near the very top of a male-dominated sport, but also for the way she had recovered from her terrible accident in the summer of 2012.  After the accident everybody else would have thought she doesn't really want to have anything to do with motorsport ~ she was still aiming a comeback…. Officers found no suspicious substances or medicines in her room and there were no signs of violence either in the room or on her body.

Really sad that a fighter has at last given up to natural death !!!!

Regards – S. Sampathkumar

11th Oct 2013.

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