Shock news: Fonsi Nieto retires from racing with immediate effect
In a surprising revelation Spanish journalist Mela Chercoles confirmed on as.com some rumours going around at the Sepang test saying that Fonsi Nieto has retired from racing with immediate effect despite already being listed as a Moto2 rider for the G22 Racing Team in 2011.
The owners of the team, his cousins Gelete and Pablo Nieto, are currently looking for a replacement to take over Fonsi’s vacant seat and considering the amount of riders still looking to get into the class they shouldn’t have much trouble finding a new teammate for Raffaele de Rosa.
32-year-old Nieto, nephew of legendary racer Angel Nieto, can look back on a fairly successful career in Grand Prix racing. Over the years he took five victories in the 250cc world championship, 18 podium finishes, 12 pole positions and seven fastest laps. His best year was 2002 where he finished runner-up in the championship behind title winner Marco Melandri.
Prior to that Fonsi had already won the 125cc Spanish Championship in 1998 and the 250cc Spanish Championship twice in 1999 and 2000.
He moved to World Superbikes in 2005. In 2007 he also had a short stint in the MotoGP class, replacing injured Olivier Jacques for the French Grand Prix that year.
Last year he returned to Grand Prix racing in the new Moto2 class. After a mediocre start to the season he crashed heavily in the qualifying for the Indianapolis Grand Prix, shattering his left foot. His recovery got off to a nightmare start when an adverse reaction to painkillers given at the hospital led to a respiratory arrest for forty seconds until he was resuscitated and complications after the surgery meant that he almost lost his foot, making a second and third surgery necessary before his flight home to Spain. It is believed that this experience added to Fonsi’s decision to retire from racing.
There will be an official press conference on Monday where Fonsi and his team will speak about his retirement.