Local News

Goldsboro Mourns Fallen Dirt Bike Racer

Posted August 30, 2001 9:29 a.m. EDT

— Just riding a dirt bike can be dangerous not to mention racing around turns and over jumps on a track. A five-time dirt bike champ from Goldsboro died recently during a race.

At Trinity Baptist Church in Goldsboro, friends, family and fans came to honor cyclist Will Davis. Many of his fans were also competitors -- some of the best racers in dirt track competition.

"Will was a great racer, but he was much more than that. He was such a great person," says racer Nicky Hayden.

"They only take the good ones and Will Davis was a husband, a father. He was loved by thousands all across the United States," says AMA racing broadcaster Steve Morehead.

Davis, 36, died Saturday evening in Sedalia, Missouri, in the first lap of the AMA Grand National Championship. Several racers were tangled up, but only Davis' injuries were fatal.

"We know unfortunately things are going to happen in any motorsport and do our best to try to be safe when we're out there and things happen," says retired racer Scott Carpenter.

Davis was just as well-known for his low-profile charitable work.

"I believe the total over the years was he had visited over 1,000 sick kids in hospitals around the country," says racer Chris Carr.

"I think that's just what was so unique about the guy. I mean just seeing the amount of people here and last night, it just backs up that whole theory," Carpenter says.

Davis leaves behind a wife, Rhonda Davis, and a 7-year-old son named Cole. Davis' work with terminally ill children won him the AMA award as the Professional Sportsman of the Year last December.