A STROUD motorcyclist died while taking part in the Isle of Man TT races this week.
Bob Price, 65, was an experienced rider who died after a collision in the Supersport category race on Monday.
His death is currently under investigation and a coroner has been informed.
The tragedy happened in the village of Ballaugh on the third of Mr Price’s four planned laps.
He came off at a humpback bridge which ended a straight section of the 37.5-mile course.
Ballaugh Bridge provides a kink through the village road and riders commonly fall off there.
Five minutes before he raced Mr Price spoke to Minchinhampton builder John Cooper, 54.
The two had known each other for several years and Mr Price had told Mr Cooper John he was looking forward to the race.
“He was a genuinely nice guy. He was a very calm person who we never saw upset,” said Mr Cooper, father of promising young rider Dan Cooper.
“It is incredibly sad,” added Mr Cooper, who heard of the incident when Dan returned from his own ride and said there was a lot of debris at the bridge.
Around two hours later it emerged Mr Price had been involved and had died from his injuries.
Fred Redding, 72, was Bob’s mechanic from 1985 until 2007.
He told the SNJ: “Bob was an excellent mechanic and rider.
“He was a very good friend and we had a lot of good times together.
“He will be dearly missed.”
His wife Hazel Redding added: “It hasn’t really sunk in yet.”
Mr Price owned a car body repair shop on Chalford Industrial Estate. Fellow traders on the estate declined to comment following the news.
Having first competed in the TT in 1992, 'Bomb', as he was known, was an enthusiastic rider who achieved a podium position in the MGP Junior Classic and Senior Classic rides in 2002.
The news of his death was broken by the Auto Cycle Union (ACU) on Monday. The ACU passed on its “deepest sympathy” to Bob’s family and friends.
SNJ readers have paid tribute to Bomb through some touching messages:
Graham and Lynn Yateman said: "We have known Bomb for many years. He was a dedicated racer and a true sports man, he will be sadly missed."
Family friend Mark Tremlin said: "So sad to hear of the death at the TT of Bob "Dicer" Price, a friend since school and an all round nice guy."
Martin Vincent added: "I've know Bob for more than 10 years. He always worked on my cars and always to the highest standard. Its a great loss but I know he always enjoyed his racing and perhaps would have wished to go that way. God bless you Bob."
Fellow bike enthusiast Joe Green said: "I have known Bob for over 12 years. I first met him at the 2002 Manx Grand Prix and we soon became friends. Bob was an excellent mechanic and rider and dedicated to his road racing. A truly great guy and sportsman. He will be sadly missed. So sad to hear of his death at the TT. Bless you Bob. RIP."
Jacqueline Kroft Burgon sent in this comment.
"I had been phoning Bob for the last couple of days and so decided to pop by this morning to ask him about my car.
"He’s usually working on some classic on a Saturday morning. As I approached, I noticed there wasn’t the usual array of cars lined up waiting for him. Then I saw the flowers and heartfelt notices by his door.
"I can’t tell you what a loss this is for me or anyone who had the pleasure of working with him. Bob was a bright character and a masterful bike/car man.
"I used to enjoy chatting with him as he had a Zen-like approach to life.
"There was invariably some interesting person dropping by at the same time with an unusual automobile and story.
"Always a happy moment at his workshop, where conversations would drift to the sunny side of the street.
"There were occasions when Bob would return from one of his races sporting an injury or two or three.
"We would talk about it being the last time. I guess this would be the only way Bob could make it the last time. There is comfort in knowing that he died doing what he loved.
"He will be missed by many and today is a very sad day for me. RIP Bob, it was a privilege to know you. My sympathies to the family."
Peter Arnold of PACRE Honda said sent in these thoughts.
"My sincere thoughts to his family and whilst a sad loss, Bob lived for his racing, in England, Isle of Man and in Belgium, Bob was a pleasure to know and meet up with."