Longtime racer John Ashmead, best known for his 1989 Daytona 200 victory, died of brain cancer on Sunday, October 16 at 10:34 pm ET in Port St. Lucie, Florida. He was 59.

Ashmead, who was originally from West Palm Beach, Fla., but was living in Palm City, Fla., when he died, began club racing at age 15 in 1978, according to friend and fellow racer Paul Schwemer.

In addition to winning the 1989 Daytona 200, Ashmead won another AMA Superbike race at Laguna Seca in 1985 and the AMA Supersport races at Daytona in 1988 and Hartland Park in 1989.

He finished third in the 1986 AMA Superbike Championship and finished second in the AMA Supersport Championship in 1988 and 1989.

In addition to being the winner of the Daytona 200, Ashmead also holds the all-time Daytona 200 driving record at 4,573 miles, and the record for most Daytona 200 races started at 34 miles over the 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.

There will be no family memorial service.

God bless you, John Ashmead.

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