Long-time racer John Ashmead, best known for winning the 1989 Daytona 200, died from brain cancer Sunday, October 16 at 10:34 p.m. Eastern Time in Port St. Lucie, Florida. He was 59.
Ashmead, who was originally from West Palm Beach, Florida, but was living in Palm City, Florida, when he passed, started club racing at age 15 in 1978, according to friend and fellow racer Paul Schwemmer.
In addition to winning the 1989 Daytona 200, Ashmead won another AMA Superbike race at Laguna Seca in 1985 and AMA Supersport races at Daytona in 1988 and at Heartland Park in 1989.
He finished third in the 1986 AMA Superbike Championship and was the runner-up in the AMA Supersport Championship in 1988 and 1989.
In addition to being a Daytona 200 race winner, Ashmead also holds the all-time Daytona 200 mileage record at 4,573 miles and the record for most Daytona 200 race starts at 34, ranging five decades from 1983 to 2021.
John Ashmead is survived by his mother Shirley Ashmead, brother Vaughn Ashmead, and sisters Leslie Felton and Ruth Ann Blake.
No memorial service will be held by the family.
Godspeed, John Ashmead.