Death linked to medicine
Five-time World Boxing Champion Johnny Tapia died of heart disease exacerbated by prescription drugs, an autopsy report released on Wednesday concluded. The 45-year-old boxer, who was found dead at his home in Albuquerque, New Mexico, died as a result of complications from hypertensive heart disease. Prescription drugs were a contributing factor, the autopsy report said. The cause of death was an accident. Tapia’s wife first released the results on Wednesday, saying her husband died of heart disease and had no illegal drugs in his system. He rose to prominence in the late 1980s, and eventually won five world boxing championships in three weight classes: super flyweight, bantamweight and featherweight. His final professional boxing record was 59 wins, five losses and two draws. Thirty of his wins were knock-outs. In 2007, he planned a comeback bout against Ilido Julio dubbed “The Final Fury.” A month later he was found unconscious of a cocaine overdose and was eventually taken into custody for violating his parole stemming from a prior cocaine offense. Tapia was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico. His father was murdered when his mother was pregnant with him, and his mother was later murdered when he was eight years old.
Ducati replace Rossi
Ducati have selected Andrea Dovizioso to replace fellow Italian rider Valentino Rossi for the next two seasons, the MotoGP team announced on Wednesday. Yamaha Tech 3’s Dovizioso, 26, will join teammate Nicky Hayden at Ducati until 2014 after seven-time MotoGP world champion Rossi opted to switch back to Yamaha next season. “The agreement reached with Andrea Dovizioso confirms the company’s primary interest in racing, which is an active and strategic part of Ducati’s DNA and heritage,” president Gabriele Del Torchio said in a statement. “It is with great pleasure that I welcome Andrea, as we marshal our best efforts in confronting the MotoGP World Championship.” As preparations begin for this weekend’s Czech Republic Grand Prix, Ducati also revealed Hayden will remain off-track after the American injured his right hand during a qualifying crash at Indianapolis last weekend. Hayden will not be replaced for the race, meaning Ducati’s only representative will be Rossi.
Brawn decries randomness
The novelty of a vast number of different race winners will wear off and Formula One must avoid being too random to keep fans glued to the action, Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn said on Wednesday. “For F1, we must make sure that the random factor is not too strong,” Brawn said on the Autosport Web site. Seven different drivers won the first seven races of this year’s championship, the first time that had occurred. Brawn hopes the second half of the season will be less unpredictable. “I think there have been some ... elements of this year that have been exciting, but I actually think that [the excitement] will fade after a while if it stays too random,” Brawn said. “What we cannot have in motorsport is a randomness where you don’t know who is going to win, and that you could work really hard to improve the car, but your car doesn’t suit the conditions and you are not competitive. That is not where we want to be.”