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DATE News (chronologically)
05/09/11
f1
Paul Di Resta's grief over suspected suicide of stepfather
F1 driver Paul Di Resta battled through the grief of his stepdad's death to race yesterday. Dougie McCracken, 46, a former professional footballer, was found dead on Thursday evening at the home he shared with Paul's mum Marie in Lanark.

It's understood the former Ayr United central defender, from Kilwinning, Ayrshire, had taken his own life. Police said there were no suspicious circumstances.

Last night, a family friend said: "Everyone is heartbroken and struggling to take in what has happened."

Marie split with rising F1 star Paul's dad Louis when their son was four and went on to marry businessman Dougie.

No one was available for comment at the couple's house last night.

Paul, 25, put his sadness to one side as he started 13th on the grid at yesterday's Turkish Grand Prix in Istanbul.

He was forced to retire after 44 laps, finishing in 23rd place.

Dougie played for Ayr United between 1985 and 1990 and was Ally MacLeod's first signing in his final spell as manager of the club.

"Dougie was a cult hero with the fans during the legendary Ally MacLeod's last managerial stint at the club."

Paul, from Bathgate, West Lothian, the cousin of IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti, was brought up by his dad but remained close to his mum.

He was put behind the wheel of a go-kart as soon as he could walk and his motor-racing fanatic dad has backed him all the way. He now lives in Monaco. The Daily Record

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