Canadian Downhill Legend Steve Smith Dies at 26

Date May 10, 2016
Rider’s drive, determination and love for living will be remembered by all those whose paths he crossed
 
World Cup sensation Steve Smith passed away this afternoon after suffering a massive brain injury resulting from an enduro motorcycle accident in his hometown of Nanaimo, British Columbia. He was 26 years old.
 
“Today we lost a great person, who taught me about myself and influenced many,” says Devinci Global Racing Team Manager, Gabe Fox. “Stevie was a fierce competitor, an honest friend and a rider who made me proud on countless occasions. I am honoured to consider him my friend for so long.”
Downhill at the 2013 Leogang UCI MTB World Cup Finals, Austria.

Downhill at the 2013 Leogang UCI MTB World Cup Finals, Austria.

 
Smith hailed from Vancouver Island, where he sharpened his mountain biking skills on the rainforest trails of Mt. Prevost. A force on the Canadian downhill racing scene for years, he became an international household name in 2013 after pocketing World Cup wins at Leogang, Hafjell, and Mont-Sainte-Anne, Que. Those efforts culminated in the World Cup Overall Title the same year—downhill racing’s ultimate achievement.
 
Smith is revered by fellow competitors and loved by friends, family and fans, who’ve been following what had been an explosive start to the 2016 season. Pushing past injuries that led to consecutive sidelined seasons, The Canadian Chainsaw was back in podium form this past April for the UCI WC Mountain Bike opener in Lourdes, France, where he finished in second place.
, during the 2016 UCI MTB World Cup, round two Cairns, Australia.

, during the 2016 UCI MTB World Cup, round two Cairns, Australia.

 
A driven athlete and fierce competitor, Smith was humble and grounded off the track. He was a notable influence on all young and aspiring Canadian gravity racers and others around the world. He was also a key mentor to friend and DGR teammate, Mark Wallace. 
 
“I would not be anywhere on the bike without Steve,” Wallace says. “Most importantly he taught me to be confident in my abilities, race my bike properly and take risks. As training partners, we pushed each other to the limit.”
at the 2013 UCI MTB World Championships, Pitermaritzburg, South Africa

at the 2013 UCI MTB World Championships, Pitermaritzburg, South Africa

 
At home, in his close-knit Vancouver Island community, Smith was known as a consummate outdoorsman. This is where he spent time fishing, camping, and sinking birdie putts on the golf course. His spirit was infectious and inspirational. He passed away peacefully surrounded by his close family and those he positively affected. Steve Smith is survived by his devoted mother, Tiann, sister, Kara, his uncle, Eric, niece and nephew, Myla and Luke, grandmother, Judi, and girlfriend, Caily Schenkeveld. 
 
His family remembers him as a great warrior.
 
“Steve was the most successful Canadian Gravity Racer of all time,” Fox says. “His passing leaves a huge hole in our hearts here at Devinci.”
 
At UCI MTB World Cup, MT ST ANNE, Quebec canada

At UCI MTB World Cup, MT ST ANNE, Quebec canada

A Celebration of Life will be held on May 21 at 1 p.m. at the Vancouver Island Convention Centre in Nanaimo, B.C. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the “Stevie Smith Legacy Fund” at www.gofundme.com/23k7fus. Funds will be earmarked for a Tiann Smith initiative, assisting talented young athletes.


 

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Comments

Captain-Snappy
0
Merwinn  - May 12, 2016, 8:35 a.m.

I still can't believe it and the news is two days old. It's surreal. I keep thinking when I watch the next WC race and he'll be there…

Reply

boomforeal
0
boomforeal  - May 10, 2016, 10:25 p.m.

what a loss to the sport. a great rider, and by all accounts a great dude

i'm a bit surprised this doesn't happen more often. riding a motorcycle is perhaps the most dangerous mainstream activity there is

but he went out like he lived his life, full gas. i like that his family is choosing to celebrate his life rather than mourn his passing, and asking those interested in giving in his memory to do so to a fund that supports up and coming athletes

rip

Reply

Faction
0
Derp  - May 11, 2016, 7:18 a.m.

Not to make light of the situation but that is the primary reason why I quit riding moto. Way too many close calls, near misses, and situations you get in that you have little control of. You can go as fast as you can twist the throttle and while that can be addictive, there are huge consequences.

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0
Ted Roome  - May 10, 2016, 9:55 p.m.

there are no words. I'm sad and angry.

Reply

bavaria-20
+1 Beau Miller
Bavaria 2.0  - May 10, 2016, 9:33 p.m.

Did you guys seriously just stick another post above this one? Shameful. This post or a eulogy or any Smith related posts should be the top post on this web site for days to come. I'm not even Canadian, and I'm ashamed for you.

Rip it up in peace, Steve. Your memory lives on strong in all of us.

Reply

nopow
0
Nopow  - May 10, 2016, 11:20 p.m.

OLY . . . . . No kidding . . . . . . Steve was the most successful Canadian gravity racer. I am not Canadian either but felt like he was home town as I am just across the sound from him and Mark. I still can't believe it. He will be missed.

Reply

pete@nsmb.com
-1 Beau Miller
Pete Roggeman  - May 10, 2016, 11:30 p.m.

Easy, tiger. Sometimes things are scheduled in advance and stuff happens. I think you'll find it's fixed now.

Reply

Captain-Snappy
0
Merwinn  - May 11, 2016, 11:16 a.m.

Not a time to judge others Oly, but it is time to grow up and not lash out at others simply because they aren't doing what you would.

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nat-brown
0
Nat Brown  - May 10, 2016, 8:31 p.m.

A great inspiration to our sport is lost.

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thetruthisoutthere
0
Thetruthisoutthere  - May 10, 2016, 7:58 p.m.

So sad and a tragic loss. I can't say anything more.

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GladePlayboy
0
Rob Gretchen  - May 10, 2016, 7:32 p.m.

I am speechless… such a sad day. The tears are real.

Reply

slimshady76
0
Luix  - May 10, 2016, 5:57 p.m.

I can't believe this. Such a great rider, such a great person. Our little world just gog smaller today.

Boy, this has to be the worst year ever.

Reply

pete@nsmb.com
0
Pete Roggeman  - May 10, 2016, 4:53 p.m.

This is heartbreaking. Such a great guy and so accomplished already at 26.

Reply

dave-boychuk
0
Dave Boychuk  - May 10, 2016, 4:49 p.m.

This is crushing news. Stevie was an athlete that caught the attention of many, including my young son. He will be sorely missed in the riding community.
Condolences to those close to him, a devastating loss.

Fair winds and following seas, Mr. Smith.

Reply

jonathan-harris
0
Jonathan Harris  - May 10, 2016, 4:38 p.m.

Hard news to hear. Very sad. Talking to him he was so grateful for the support his mum was to him. Hope she can take something away from the fact that she allowed him to achieve his dreams.

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