SEBRING, Fla. (March 16, 2001) -- French sports car racer Bob Wollek, 58, died Friday afternoon after being struck by a vehicle while riding his bicycle near Sebring International Raceway. Wollek was to compete in Saturday's 12 Hours of...
SEBRING, Fla. (March 16, 2001) -- French sports car racer Bob Wollek, 58, died Friday afternoon after being struck by a vehicle while riding his bicycle near Sebring International Raceway. Wollek was to compete in Saturday's 12 Hours of Sebring sports car endurance race, an event he won in 1985. Wollek was riding west on Highway 98 when he was struck from behind at approximately 4:30 p.m. He was transported to Highlands Regional Medical Center in Sebring and was pronounced dead.
The accident is under investigation by the Florida Highway Patrol. Born in Strasbourg, France, "Brilliant Bob" had won just about all the major endurance events there were to win in the world of sports car racing - and all in Porsches. Having raced for more than 25 years, Wollek's titles included 2 class wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans; four overall wins at the 24 Hours of Daytona; and a class win and an overall victory at the 12 Hours of Sebring. He had won the world Porsche Cup seven times - more than any other Porsche driver in history. During the nine-year period between 1982 and 1991, Bob was a four time overall winner of the 24 Hours of Daytona in factory Porsche 962.
In 2000, he won the American Le Mans Series events at Charlotte, Silverstone, Portland, Las Vegas, and Petit Le Mans. This year, he had driven at the 24 Hours of Daytona, where he co-drove in a Lola/Porsche which did not finish the event, and in the ALMS race at Texas, where he finished fourth. "We are deeply saddened by this terrible news," said Scott Atherton, President and COO of the Panoz Motor Sports Group, which includes the American Le Mans Series and Sebring International Raceway. "Our immediate thoughts are with Bob's family, as well as all of his teammates and friends at Porsche and his many fans throughout the world. He has been an icon in sports car racing for two decades and his accomplishments behind the wheel are legendary. It is a very sad day for motorsports."
-Andy Hall, ALMS