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Luke Spalding: We will always be Flying with 23   
Story By: Announcement  Date: 17/09/2016 at 9:17:12 AM 
IN HIS brief time in our world, Luke Spalding touched more people than someone of his age could ever be expected to achieve for someone so young.

It is an old and overused cliché, but there is no other way to describe Luke other than that he was an inspiration.

An inspiration in the way he tackled his life, his racing and his approach to others that at times seemed like sacrificing himself for the greater good.

As determined as he was to forge a racing career and enjoy the sport he loved, his efforts outside of the racing bubble were even more noteworthy and cut to the core of who Luke was as a human being.

His ‘iPads for Kids with Cancer’ campaign run at Christmas raised money to purchase iPads for kids undergoing treatment for the very same illness he was battling and at last count, he had given away more than 75 of them.

His theory was that they would be able to better stay in touch with their friends and family during the festive season whilst they fought their fights.

All through the process all he asked for was support. He never once made it about himself, despite a battle that he knew could easily take his own life at any stage.

His efforts to continue racing, despite being in and out of hospital, were similarly impressive.

Sometimes he would barely be strong enough to turn the wheel and yet every time he got to the circuit he would give everything he could.

He was rewarded with a National class title in Formula 3 last year and no one in the industry would ever have begrudged him that honour – because he earned it purely as a racing driver, not as someone out to drive sympathy for his cause.

The grin on his face when he won the title won’t easily be forgotten by those present: it was as raw and human a reaction as you could possible imagine.

Watching his determined battles to move his career forwards into the V8 Utes was hard for everyone. He would repeatedly be knocked down by his illness, making him too physically weak to drive or restricting him to a hospital bed when he would have rather been in a racing seat.

And yet he continued to fight for funds, for health and for opportunity to get back on track. Mentally, at least to everyone on the outside, this kid was unstoppable.

It seemed like nothing could get this indomitable young man down.

And that will be his legacy.

Last night, in the early hours of Saturday, September 17, the world lost Luke – but he was not taken by Cancer. He took it on, full of life, verve and drive and a passion for maximising every moment either on the track or trying to help others.

It is truly, deeply, impossibly sad that he is gone but the legacy that he created and the people he touched will be around for a long time to continue to tell the tale.

And if we had to lose Luke, at some point, it seemed appropriate that it would be at a time when the racing community – no, the racing family – was gathered together doing what they do.

Because as the news spread around the paddock, and people had the solemn realisation of what they had missed, not one person thought Luke had lost a battle to Cancer.

To a person, everyone thought he’d won the war of living life.

And that’s what he would have wanted.

The staff, management and friends of Formula 3 send our thoughts to the Spalding family and his friends who were so touched by his life.

Sales of the Luke Spalding #weflywith23 stickers will continue, with the blessing of Luke’s family. The funds will continue to be donated to the ‘iPads for Kids with Cancer’ program this Christmas. Luke’s family send their thanks to everyone who has supported the sticker drive so far.

Purchase stickers at the V8 Sleuth store here:

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