Indy car driver Dan Wheldon dies from injuries during crash

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by MacNut, Oct 16, 2011.

  1. MacNut, Oct 16, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2011

    MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #1
    Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon died Sunday in a fiery 15-car wreck at Las Vegas Motor Speedway when his car flew over another on Lap 13 and smashed into the wall just outside turn 2.

    Wheldon was 33. Drivers were told of Wheldon's death in a meeting about two hours after the fiery, smoky crash that many drivers said was the worst they had ever seen.

    He won the Indianapolis 500 twice, including this year.

    "IndyCar is very sad to announce that Dan Wheldon has passed away from unsurvivable injuries," IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with his family today. IndyCar, its drivers and owners, have decided to end the race. In honor of Dan Wheldon, the drivers have decided to do a five-lap salute to in his honor."

    Three other drivers, including championship contender Will Power, were hurt in the pileup.

    The wreck left Townsend Bell upside down and smoldering cars and debris littered the track nearly halfway up the straightaway of the 1.5-mile oval.

    The track was red-flagged following the accidents while crews worked on fences and removed smashed cars.

    Wheldon started in the back of the pack but quickly worked his way through the 34-car field before the wreck.

    "It was like a movie scene which they try to make as gnarly as possible," said Danica Patrick, making her final IndyCar start. "It was debris everywhere across the whole track, you could smell the smoke, you could see the billowing smoke on the back straight from the car. There was a chunk of fire that we were driving around. You could see cars scattered.

    Drivers had been concerned about the high speeds at the track, where they were hitting nearly 225 mph during practice.

    Their concerns became reality when contact on Turn 2 sent cars flying through the air, crashing into each other and into the outside wall and catch fence.

    "I'll tell you, I've never seen anything like it," Ryan Briscoe said. "The debris we all had to drive through the lap later, it looked like a war scene from Terminator or something. I mean, there were just pieces of metal and car on fire in the middle of the track with no car attached to it and just debris everywhere. So it was scary, and your first thoughts are hoping that no one is hurt because there's just stuff everywhere. Crazy."

    http://abcnews.go.com/Sports/wireStory/wheldon-hurt-huge-crash-vegas-14749012
     
  2. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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  3. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    Just saw the accident. I am surprised more didn't die. So sad.

    The picture with the family. Very sad.
     
  4. Theclamshell macrumors 68030

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    I saw it from a bit after the crash to the 5 lap remembrance. Very, very sad...
     
  5. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    A lot of the drivers had concerns about the speed of this race, I don't see how it doesn't change the sport going forward.
     
  6. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    It just like the announcer said at the very start of the crash video, too many cars, too fast, dirty air. Not good for maintaining traction.
     
  7. dmr727 macrumors G3

    dmr727

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    Wow - what a bummer. I'm not a huge Indy fan, but I follow casually enough to know what a big presence Wheldon has been for the sport over the years.

    RIP Dan.
     
  8. Apple OC macrumors 68040

    Apple OC

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    even though the cars have become much safer over the years ... it really hits home how dangerous those guys live.

    RIP Dan
     
  9. AndyR macrumors 6502a

    AndyR

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    This really knocked me back this morning. I used to race professionally and was trying to break into Champ Car / Indycar the same way Dan did. He was a year ahead of me in Formula Ford, and although I didn't make it all the way (got as far as Barber Dodge Pro Series which was 2 levels below Champ Car), Dan was the mile stick where you knew you could get there if you worked hard enough.

    Never met him but always liked him. His drive was to get to the 500, and the 500 was the goal of my career so when he got there and won in 2005 I was thrilled for him. Now I'm distraught.

    Feel so bad for his wife Suzy and his 2 boys who will now grow up without a their father.

    RIP Dan

    :(
     
  10. steadysignal macrumors 6502a

    steadysignal

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    Scary and Sad.

    Feel bad for that family.

    Shouldn't have to die doing what you love.
     
  11. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    Wow, that was a pretty horrific crash. I feel bad for the family, especially the 2 young boys.
     
  12. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    A terrible tragedy. I think there are some safety issues with this series and I wonder where this crash will leave IndyCar. But above all else, a horrible tragedy.
     
  13. MacNut thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    I don't follow Indycar, or Nascar for that matter but I gather from watching yesterday that Wheldon was testing the prototype this year for next years safer car. That would of helped with this crash but the bigger issue I gather is the safeness of the track in Vegas and if they should even of been racing there to begin with.

    This seems to have been a hyped up race to get ratings and push the limits that may have backfired.
     
  14. AndyR macrumors 6502a

    AndyR

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    Yeah they should never have gone to Vegas, its just not suited for Indycar. These drivers have survived some horrendous crashes in those cars but getting up into the catch fencing is going to destroy pretty much any open wheeler, and it was just **** luck than Dan went in helmet side first. Mike Conway went in rear first at Indy and it destroyed the car and broke his back, but was all down the angle of the hit. Sadly for Dan, it didn't :(

    Still shaking :(
     
  15. anotonin macrumors member

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    Rest in peace, Mr. Dan Wheldon. I may not know you, but your family, friends and fans will surely miss you.
     
  16. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

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    I'm Glad This Was Posted

    Knew Dan from a while back in his UK day's..

    R.I.P.
     
  17. evilblob macrumors member

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    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPod; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

    This, and now Marco Simomcelli in the MotoGP, within the space of a week. Not a good week for Motor Racing.

    RIP Dan and Marco
     

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