A world-famous hovercraft has died in a crash in Sweden. Daniel Newton, 42, from Romiley in Stockport, Greater Manchester, lost his life in a crash at the World Hovercraft Racing Championships. An inquest into the death of the hovercraft engineer has been opened and adjourned.
An ardent enthusiast, Mr Newton had won acclaim on the world glider racing circuit, competing in the highest category at world championship level.
His grieving family said in a statement: “Daniel was incredibly caring, mischievous, kind and loving.
“Loved by his family and friends, passionate about his work – he was a well-respected, reliable, experienced professional.”
The statement continued: “He had been an active member of the Hovercraft Club of Great Britain for over 30 years, competing in events all over the world and truly loved the sport.
Assistant Coroner Lauren Costello was told the race was live streamed around the world on September 2.
The inquest heard during the race developed a mechanical problem with Mr Newton’s hovercraft.
He is said to have slowed down from 70mph and manoeuvred, but a competitor from Germany was unable to slow down and hit the side of Mr Newton’s hovercraft.
Mr Newton was thrown into the air before hitting the water on impact. He was later confirmed dead at the scene after an air ambulance was displaced.
Wood said an autopsy in Sweden gave the cause of death as extensive injuries. At the opening of the hearing, it was heard that there are no concerns about crime or about the first aid arrangements that are available during the day. Ms Costello set a preliminary hearing date for March.
She also requested reports from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as well as documents from investigations in Sweden before the full hearing.
In a post on its website, the World Hovercraft Federation said: “It is with deep regret that we have to inform you that Daniel Newton, number 21, was seriously and tragically injured following a racing incident between two craft at our world championship in Sweden. He lost his life.
“Unfortunately, the efforts of our marshals and paramedics were to no avail. We ask that the family be given space and privacy at this devastating time for them.”
Tony Drake, president of the World Hovercraft Federation, said Newton’s family flew to Sweden in the aftermath. He wrote in a post on Facebook: “As you know by now, our friend and racing colleague, Daniel Newton, sadly lost his life following a racing incident at our World Championships in Sweden.
“Our thoughts go out to his family at this tragic and sad time. It will be a comfort to know that Daniel did not suffer in any way. From an informal and provisional medical report, he was unconscious and pain-free from the moment of the incident. and passed away very shortly thereafter.
“Daniel was much loved and cared for by many communities – at work, his extensive group of friends, floating clubs around the world but first and foremost by his family.”
He added that the World Hovercraft Federation would investigate the accident along with how the organization responded to it.