Ethan was competing at Paducah International Raceway in the South East Amateur Nationals, a round of the AMA Sports Black Cat Gold Dirt Track Championships, when he went into a speed wobble and ran into a wall, according to eyewitnesses. He was taken to a nearby hospital where he later died.
Earl Hayden, Ethan’s great uncle and the force behind Earl’s Racing Team, got the news just before Sunday morning warm-up at the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai.
“You know, he was just such a great kid, and not just as a rider, but just a great little kid from a great family,” Earl Hayden said following the race. “I just want everyone to know our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family and we’ll do everything we can to make sure they know how much we love them and how much Eathan will be missed.”
Ethan is survived by his parents, Frankie and Kerrie Gillim, and brothers, Frankie Lee, 14, and Hayden, 12.
Earl Hayden, who will be returning to Owensboro from Shanghai on Monday, wasn’t aware of any funeral arrangements. Cycle News will post further news as it becomes available.