DEATH IN MOTORSPORT: Moto2 rider Luis Salom has died after crashing during practice for the Catalunya Grand Prix. He was 24 years old. Image: Tony Gutierrez / AP
Barcelona - Spanish Moto 2 rider Luis Salom has died from his injuries after crashing in Catalonia Grand Prix practice on Friday, race organisers confirmed.
The 24-year-old SAG team rider crashed at Turn 12 at the challenging Montmelo track near Barcelona with 25 minutes left in Moto2 Free Practice 2.
Organisers said in a statement: "Two medical cars and then two ambulances were immediately on scene to treat the 24-year-old and the medical helicopter was also deployed to assist in his treatment.
"Due the severity of his condition, the decision was taken to transfer Salom by road to the nearby Hospital General de Catalunya.
"On arrival, he underwent surgery, but despite the best efforts of the trauma team, he passed away at 16:55 local time (14:55 GMT)," it concluded.
Sad day for motocycling
Salom made his world championship debut at Jerez in 2009 in the 125cc category, and finished on the podium 25 times - with nine wins in the Moto3 category.
He was runner-up in the 2012 Moto3 world championship and third overall in 2013.
READ: MotoGP crash - Fans, riders react to Luis Salom death
He also finished on the podium three times in 41 appearances in the Moto2 world championship, including a second place in the opening round of 2016 at Losail in Qatar.
Watch the crash below: (Warning grim footage)
Racing to continue
Race directors said the decision to continue racing was made after consultation with Salom's family, the riders, teams and the safety commission.
A message posted on Twitter by Aspar Team MotoGP read: "To honor Luis Salom, we will continue doing what he most loved, racing."
Because of Salom's crash, race officials decided to use the Formula 1 track layout at the Barcelona-Catalunya circuit, which forces cars to go through a chicane just before Turn 12. Additional practice time was given to riders in all categories on Saturday to let them adapt to the new configuration.
Read: Rossi dedicates MotoGP win to rider who died in Barcelona
Jorge Lorenzo, MotoGP's championship leader, said: "Now there are two slow turns instead of a fast one, and it made it difficult for us. But it's for safety reasons, they had to make the circuit safer."
Salom crashed hard into the safety barrier and was in cardiac arrest when doctors arrived at the scene.
The rider was intubated and submitted to cardiopulmonary resuscitation for 18 minutes at trackside, and treatment continued for 40min as he was transported to the hospital. Doctors performed exploratory surgery when he arrived but he was declared dead about 45min later.