NASCAR Fans Hurt at Daytona
Kyle Larson Gets Air Borne
This picture shows how bad the crash was before Kyle got air borne. The front of the car, including the hood, is already mostly gone.
Kyle Larson goes on one big ride
In this picture the car has spun back down but is still moving up in the air. He is also already over three feet up, over the Safer Barrier.
Kyle’s wild ride continues
In this picture the car has spun with the front end getting caught in the catch fence. Also in the picture on the right, horizontally you can see the large cables that are closely spaced at the bottom and spread out as they get higher on the fence. It is apparent that the lower cables have already broken.
Kyle Larson gets caught in the fence
This picture is a different angle and taken about the same time as the previous picture. Notice the fan blade along the wall. The front of the car is partially beyond the limits of the catch fence.
Somehow Kyle Larson’s engine and a tire made it through the catch fence. Many people will call for NASCAR to review their safety procedures after this unfortunate event. The criticism will be great but the reality no one more that NASCAR wants the spectators of their events to be safe. Without fans there would be no NASCAR. If there is information from this accident that shows changes must be made, NASCAR will make them. If you don’t believe me look at the Safer Barrier right in front of the NASCAR Official. That is the result of specific on track incidents.
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Anytime something happens during a NASCAR race and someone gets hurt it is bad. When fans go to the track and get hurt it is worse. The NASCAR Nationwide Series Drive4COPD 300 race at Daytona International Speedway ended with a big crash. Not really unusual for a restrictor plate track and a crash that in itself just goes along with that style of racing. This time things were much different.
If you have ever been to a race there is a fence around the outside of the track in order to protect the fans from any debris that might happen to fall off a car. Describing it like a fence doesn’t really do it justice. Sure part of the fence is similar to what you might find in your back yard but the similarities stops there.
The fence consists of poles that are about 6” in diameter and bent in word towards the track. Between the poles is the fence but the fence is laced through with cable that is about 3/8” in diameter. These cables are similar to the ones that a tow truck might use to hook up a car and drag it out of a ditch.
During the big wreck Kyle Larson’s car went air borne, cleared the outside wall and safer barrier and hit the fence. While it was doing this it was wildly spinning. This spinning action pushed the engine through the fence. It is not imaginable that an engine could break and pass through these large interlaced cables but it did.
To make matters worse one of the front tires assemblies complete with spindle, brake rotors and suspension pieces was thrown either through or over the fence. Fourteen fans were hurt and transported to a local hospital. Fourteen others were treated on site for their injuries. We pray for a speedy recovery to all who were hurt.
For those race fans that did not get to see it on TV here are some pictures to illustrate the severity of this crash.