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LMP3 Driver Timothy George Dies From Medical Condition Following IMSA Sebring Encore

By Steven Cole Smith November 11, 2019

The sports car racing world was rocked Sunday by the death of Dr. Timothy Merrill George, the Austin, Texas, neurosurgeon who has been a respected gentleman racer. He suffered a medical emergency while competing in the Michelin IMSA SportsCar Encore at Sebring International Raceway. George, 59, was on track midway through the four-hour endurance race at the wheel of the No. 2 Ligier JS P3 LMP3 Prototype when he radioed into his crew that he was in physical distress, and coming into the pits.

He was able to drive to pit road, where the track medical crew immediately began working on him, and promptly transported him to the hospital in Sebring, where he passed away. The cause of death was not announced. 

The car that George was sharing with Neil Alberico and Jon Brownson completed 54 laps and finished in ninth place in class.

George competed in the open-cockpit Mazda Prototype Challenge series before transitioning to the closed-cockpit LMP3 car when they were introduced two years ago. He has often been confused with stock car driver Tim George, former Grand Am rookie of the year who went on to drive in NASCAR's Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series.

George was the chief of pediatric neurosurgery at Dell Children's Medical Center, and a professor of surgery, neurosurgery, pediatrics and neurology at Dell Medical School at University of Texas at Austin. He was featured in the 2010 book "Real Role Models: Successful African Americans Beyond Pop Culture."

“The IMSA family is shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of Dr. Tim George today," the series said in a press release. "He was a long-time IMSA competitor and a friend to many in the paddock. At this difficult time we would like to extend our thoughts, prayers and deepest sympathies to his wife, Rosalind, and the rest of their family.”

And from the office of Sebring International Raceway: “Everyone at Sebring International Raceway extend their condolences to the family of Dr. Timothy George who passed earlier today after competing in a race here.  Not only was he a passionate competitor and a popular member of the IMSA community, but he was most notably a brilliant physician and family man. We offer our thoughts, prayers and sympathy to his family, friends and teammates in both the medical field and motorsports.”

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This story was first published on AUTOWEEK. Read the original article here.