Marco Simoncelli on the meaning of life

Dailies -



This is a fairly well known quote by Marco Simoncelli, but one that might be worth repeating as the mourning for his untimely death enters its second week. When you choose to do dangerous things, you’re aware of the risks, but you make a conscious decision that the rewards merit taking them. In his 24 years, Simoncelli experienced a World Championship and rose to the rarified ranks of the fastest motorcycle racers on earth. That’s more than most people do in all their lives.

  • todd

    RIP Super Sic

    My new wallpaper….. Thanks HFL

    • evilbahumut

      Is there a larger/ higher res version of this? I’m thinking the same thing as todd

  • Jose

    I thought that Burt Munro said it before

    • nick2ny
    • Sean Smith

      Maybe, but that doesn’t make it any less true.

  • oldblue

    I’m sure Burt and Marco would get along famously. Both fast, fun and driven.

  • evilbahumut

    Whoah, talk about steering with the rear.. Supermoto much?

    • Jesse

      That looks so bad ass. Wow.

  • Greg

    Not the actual quote….

    Should be:
    “No. You live more for five minutes going fast on a bike like that than other people do in all of their life.”

    • Sean Smith

      True. I edited it slightly for looks and clarity.

      • jbm

        You can’t “edit” someone’s words and then put them in quotes. If you truly are journalist, you should know that. If HFL wants to be treated as a serious publication, it should hold itself to the highest journalistic standards. ANY edit to someone’s words while attributing it as their original quote is a problem.

        • Wes Siler

          Actually, editing for clarity, punctuation, brevity and correct grammar is common, accepted practice. I suggest you go drink a beer and chill the fuck out.

          • Thom

            Oh Wes . Hate to clue you in oh wise one , but by standards and law a ” Quote ” has to be just that , an exact QUOTE otherwise its a PARAPHRASE

            Try quoting someone who gives a damn what you write with your edits and find how fast your tail will wind up in court with a multi $$$ lawsuit

            Miss out on that in Writing 101 or has journalistic standards slipped so low in this No Brow Age that any form of accuracy has become passe ‘ ?

            PARAPHRASE there Wes . Your word for today


            • valen

              Wes is right. Quotes are generally edited for clarity. If HFL ran this quote in an article they might use brackets and ellipses to indicate where the quote was edited, but in a picture like this, the abridged quote is appropriate.

        • Campisi

          Ever read a direct transcription of an interview? WAY too many uhs, ahs, and awkward self-corrections to work in an article unedited.

        • Myles

          “You can’t ‘edit’ someone’s words and then put them in quotes. If you truly are journalist, you should know that. If HFL wants to be treated as a serious publication, it should spend more time listening to me because I’m brilliant and amazing and deserve to be heard. ANY edit to someone’s words while attributing it as their original quote is a problem”


        • Archer

          There are countless examples of “highbrow journalists” editing quotes or shifting context for clarity.

          Think of the first words spoken from the Lunar surface. Half of the accounts you can read add the missing “a” that Armstrong either omitted or was lost in the data stream (Armstrong himself is unsure).

          As an aside, however, I think it might be more appropriate to say up front, that this was probably Simoncelli’s take on Burt Monroe’s comment, “you can live more in five minutes in a motorcycle, in some of these events, than some people do in their life” – a quote which is also edited for a bit more clarity. Here’s a link to the original.

  • the_doctor

    Love it.

  • 10/10ths

    Another vote for a hi-res version for a poster.




  • jwinter

    Good to see Marco properly respected by everyone. I feel terrible for his family and girlfriend but they have been amazing through all this. I wish I could hear the tribute at Valencia for him. That’s going to sound insane.

  • nymoto

    Fucking yes

  • Deep6Dive

    Capirossi for one last win. 58

  • clickeye

    With all due respect to this amazing racer, I think that this quote and similar quotes (Mc Queen in Le Mans) are nonsense. I have raced often and can surely relate to the high but that is all that it is. Ask many drug addicts and they will say nothing in life feels as good as a good high. I don’t want to put words in the mouth of this gifted man but I doubt he would trade all of his laughter, family, and life experiences for 5 minutes on the track. Especially the 4 minutes and 59 before his death. I hope that my post isn’t offensive I just think there was more to this talented man (Or most men) than racing. Would you trade your life experiences for 5 minutes at the limit on a GP bike? Me either.

    • 1

      Oh cool. So you’ve experienced what it’s like to start racing at 9 years old, spend ten years racing World Championship Road Racing, be a World Champion, take a Moto GP podium.

      Thanks for you insight and wisdom.

    • Thom

      @ clickeye

      +1 Damn near said the same thing myself on the Simoncelli tribute that was here .

      @1- Oh so cool . You’re an adolescent stuck in an adult body that still hasn’t figured out what’s REALLY important in life !

      You have my pity . Because odds are you never will .

      • 1

        What would you know? Nothing. That analysis is pathetic.

        Pity. Has no credibility coming from a lady who makes the most pompous, know it all and 100% lamest comments on this web site.

    • Scott-jay

      FWIW, +1 clickeye. Bless his heart, but that’s a lame quote.

      • Brad W.

        The quote was in response to a question if he was afraid to be killed while racing.

        Of course knowing ahead of time would change anyones mind, but the point is you don’t know when its your time. Risk vs Reward.

  • Thom

    I’ll be honest , after the last races carnage and then this mornings first turn pile up , I had to turn Valencia off

    • Brad W.

      It was a very scary moment, but it shows how freaky Sic’s accident was. The end of the race is why I find the sport so awesome.

  • clickeye

    I love how I put up a respectful post and get a response as if I was Mr. Know-it-All. Can we just all agree that nobody would trade a life with a best friend or a loving parent for 5 minutes on a race track. I raced 1000 miles in BAJA and wouldn’t trade it for a month with my two year old. That’s me though.

    • nick2ny

      I totally see your point, and never like it when people jump down others’ throats when a contrarian viewpoint is expressed. Racing is like a drug–I’m addicted to the thrill of speed, but somewhere deep down I have a suspicion that it’s a shallow, dangerous addiction. I gotta buy some better gear!

  • clickeye

    I meant to say “1 response” not “a response”. I guess there is always 1.

  • stefano

    HFL team – do any of you have a audtio / visual source for this quote? i’m not here to knickpick transcription technicalities, i want to possibly use the sample for something

  • JVictor75

    This is probably going to be a REALLY stupid question, but is that an example of what is known as “backing it in”?

    I see it referred to all the time but have no idea what it means.

    As to the quote, maybe he meant that you only experience true joy in your life doing what you were ostensibly MADE to do and only when you’re doing it well.

    Poetry in motion is poetry in motion, whether that poetry be expressed on a dance floor, in the sky, or on the track (horse, human, or motorsports related).

    It’s always a joy to watch somebody good at what they do having a good day doing it.

    I’ve never fully felt the import of that statement, but I’m sure Marco did as I’m sure that Rossi or Edwards do, or Chuck Yeager did, or as any of our Olympic people do.

    Whatshisname, the American swimmer with all the medals. I’m sure he gets what Marco was trying to say. And I’m sure he remembers everything about the end of the Olympics in Beijing with the weight of all those gold medallions hanging off his neck.

    There simply isn’t anything quite like being at the top of your game, doing a profession that you’ve loved since childhood, performing at your own personal best and having that verified by people who you respect to make a day worth living and a memory worth cherishing.

    THAT is a paraphrase. But one I can get behind.