Sean Edwards, a real superstar in the eyes of anyone who followed GT racing and especially Porsche Supercup, died today in an accident at a private driver training day. Edwards was passengering in what is reported to be a Porsche 996-model 911 which left the Queensland Raceway in Australia and hit a tyre-and-concrete wall, killing Edwards instantly. The driver was reportedly trapped inside the car, which caught fire, for two hours before being airlifted to hospital with life-threatening injuries.
Edwards came from a racing family. His father Guy raced in Grands Prix and in the non-championship F1 series popular in the 1970s. Guy was probably best known for being among the four drivers who pulled Niki Lauda from the wreck of his burning Ferrari 312 at the Nurburgring in 1976, for which he was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal. Sean went on to play his father in a number of scenes in the movie Rush.
Only 26-years-old and widely admired (just take a look at Twitter this morning), Sean was on his way to winning this year’s Porsche Supercup series. Anyone who’s watched the Supercup, which is on the same bill as the F1, will realise that’s no small achievement. Just ask Sebastien Loeb, The series is super-competitive, and only the very best drivers win. Sean Edwards was considered to be one the very best.
He was on a roll in 2013: on top of three wins in the Supercup, he’d also won both the Nurburgring 24 Hours and the Dubai 24 hours partnering with — among others — Bernd Schneider in the Black Falcon AMG Mercedes SLS GT3 car. Edwards started racing in Karts at the age of 11, but was racing Formula Fords by 2003, winning in his first season. He took his first title just three years later in the FIA GT3 series. GTs – and especially Porsches – took over from that point and Edwards raced both in the ALMS and, last year, at Le Mans himself.
He was surely destined to return, quite possibly at the wheel of class or overall winning machinery. So young, so talented, and so desperately sad. To his family and friends, we send our deepest condolences.
Above is just a short glimpse at Sean's undoubted talents in action at the Nurburgring in 2011.