John Goodall, 67, dies following MGP crash

A VETERAN rider has died following a crash in the Manx Grand Prix Senior Classic race on Monday evening.

John Goodall, 67, an engineer of Haverfordwest in Pembrokeshire, was airlifted to Noble's Hospital with serious chest and rib injuries after he came off his Matchless G50 classic motorcycle at Ballacraine on the opening lap.

Mr Goodall was this year's winner of the Spirit of the Manx award, having competed in every classic race at the MGP since he won the inaugural Senior Classic 25 years ago.

Race organisers the Manx Motor Cycle Club made the announcement today (Tuesday).

'He was an experienced rider, winning the 1983 Classic Senior race and having been awarded 40 replicas during his Manx Grand Prix career,' said an MMCC spokesman.

'The Manx Motor Cycle Cycle Club wishes to express its sincere sympathy to the family and friends of the late Mr Goodall.'

In the same race, Huddersfield's Chris Swallow, 26, riding a Ducati, fell at the Bungalow but was allowed to continue after being seen by the marshals and again by the doctor after he was black-flagged at Governor's.

There was also a number of incidents during the Newcomers' race.

David Hockham, 39, of Chippenham, received rib, arm and back injuries when he came off his Yamaha R6 at Rhencullen and was airlifted to Noble's Hospital.

Also taken to hospital by Air Med were Michael Sweeney, 26, of County Dublin, who sustained minor leg injuries when he came off at the Mountain Box, and Les Vallender, of Cheltenham, who fell at Graham's Memorial receiving shoulder and rib injuries.

John Shipley, Dave Matravers and Frank James came off at the Verandah, Water Works and Windy Corner respectively, but all escaped injury.

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John was someone who didn't suffer fools gladly, but once you got to know him, and start talking engineering (especially bikes), He was the nicest person you could wish to meet, many times I've "called in quickly" - and come away an hour and a half later. He will be sadly missed.


I was very sad to learn about John Goodall's death in the Manx Grand Prix yesterday. We often raced against each other on short circuits in the single cylinder class back in the 1970's. I will always remember the quiet, stylish rider who made going so fast look so easy. After losing touch with racing for many years, I was delighted to learn John was still competing on the Island, over 30 years later. It was also great to see him recognised with the 'Spirit of the Manx' award. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.


It was very shocking to hear about John's fatal accident on Monday. Indeed, he was not a man to suffer fools or timewasters gladly, but he was a good friend, a superb engineer and a very decent, kind-hearted man. John never turned me away when I brought him some incredibly difficult engineering tasks and I shall treasure even more some of the specialist tools that he manufactured for my company. God bless you John, you were unique and I shall miss you so much. My deepest sympathy to his wife Rose and family.


John was a true gentleman and brilliant engineer. For the past 17 years he did all my re-bore and crankshaft work. Selfishly to me his loss as an engineer is huge, my business will never be able to replace him. I always enjoyed my visits to take work to John. His good humour and outlook on life have left me with some memorable anecdotes. In turn when I needed some help with my engineering business, he was first in the door to help. John will be irreplaceable to so many. Our thoughts are with his wife and family at this sad time.


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