Uncini was left in a coma but made a full recovery and is now the MotoGP riders’ safety representative
Franco Uncini should be remembered for his classy victory in the 1982 world 500 championship. Competing in the perhaps biggest field of bikes in 500 GP racing to date, at the age of 27 the Italian Uncini won five races and never finished lower than fourth.
Sadly, Uncini is better remembered for one image, beamed live across the world and endlessly replayed since. It was the sickening impact when Wayne Gardner’s front fork leg split Franco’s helmet as he tried exit the track after highsiding on lap two of the 1983 Dutch 500 TT. Uncini was left in a coma but made a full recovery from the brutal crash.
Uncini did return to racing, but he didn’t win another GP. He later became the GP safety inspector.
British Grand Prix 1982: (3 parts) 1st place Uncini