Well, after 25+ years of racing, it finally happened, everyone's biggest fear, a crash.
Had made some changes to my Malibu to calm down the launch and with testing Friday the car was working great. Over two days of racing and about 12 passes, the car didn't spin once. Struggled in qualifying to get the plate set for the index (I believe I may have needed to put my old converter back in), but the car started going rounds which it hadn't for quite a while. On my semi-final round I was in the right lane, at the stripe the car crossed over to the left hitting the jersey wall and barrel rolled, as many as 7 times I'm told. The last thing I remember is exchanging words with the other driver before climbing in the car. Next thing I remember I was in the ambulance being asked questions while my clothes were being cut off.
I'm told I got out of the car on my own and took off my helmet and walked to the ambulance, none of which I can remember. Was transferred to Christiana Hospital in Delaware.
Thankfully my injuries were minimal. 3" knot/bruise/scratches on my left thigh from the lower window net rod end/bolt, bruised tail bone/rear, and sore back, shoulders, neck and chest from the harness. Although they claim it was clear, I'm sure I have a mild concussion as I get dizzy standing up too quickly and when I lie down or roll over my head spins.
The car is in bad shape. I haven't seen it in person yet, but the front and rear are destroyed. The drivers compartment is totally intact with no signs of damage. This was a SFI 25.3 cage/chassis that I built myself back in 2011. The car had almost every piece of safety equipment it could have and as a driver I also wore a Simpson Hybrid Sport head and neck restraint along with the carbon fiber Sparco helmet which has a 1 1/2" crack where it hit the left hand helmet bar.
I got the time slip and the car ran an 8.52 @ 148 which was a round win and would have had me in the finals. The car normally runs 155 mph so I'm sure I drove the stripe which my normal routine was at around the mph cone to lift, pump the brake one time and lift/coast.
Again, I do not remember the run so until someone can come forward with a first hand account, we don't know the cause. I had just gone over the chassis making an IC change and looked everything over so I have no reason to suspect a mechanical failure. The track was on kill all weekend and the temps weren't all that cool yet. I will look at the Racepak log when I have the car brought to work to strip the chassis down.
Anyway, if anyone can take anything from this, please re-look at your safety gear and car and make sure your using all the safety gear that is available.
While it sucks to loose a car I've owned so long, I'm relieved that my crash did not involve the racer in the other lane. That would have been even more devastating to me.
Here is the car before...
and here is the after...
Wow it really sucks to hear this. I remember you doing a build thread on this car and following it closely. Glad you were not more seriously injured and as you are, glad you didnt get into the car in the other lane.
Take some time to reflect and assess the damage and cause, with your mad fabricating skills hopefully maybe you can get the car repaired
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Darn DOT, sorry to hear this. A good friend plowed the wall at SGMP Div 2 bracket finals a week after winning the King of the track Wally at Sunshine 2010, he raced a guy in the final who has won not one but two million dollar bracket races. Probably the best Super Pro final round I ever saw at Sunshine.
His 69 Camaro looks about like yours does to this day. He was a helluva Super Pro bracket racer, it can happen to anyone.
Glad you're Ok.
Very Happy to hear that you are mostly OK and recovering from this crash. Hope you are able to put this behind you and move ahead. Best of Luck to You in the Future. Mark
Glad you're ok. You are dead on with everyone's worst fear.
what we do is dangerous and you never know how good your safety equipment is or your insurance for that matter until you need it. Better the car in bad shape than you. The car you built saved your life. Well done.
Sucks big time! Glad your ok
If I can add anything...2020 can SUCK IT!!!
Gotta try and find humor where you can at this point.
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Glad you are okay, sorry to see you lose such a nice car.
-a type of Cognitive bias where people with little expertise or ability assume they have superior expertise or ability. This overestimation occurs as a result of the fact that they do not have enough knowledge to know they don't have enough knowledge.
Before you argue with someone ask yourself, "Is this person mentally mature enough to grasp the concept of a different perspective?" If not there is no point to argue.
4X NE2 CHAMPION. 2020 TDRA NE2 Champion
I am really glad you are ok. Such a "Beautiful"
car. May 2021 be a better year for you and yours.
Damn, Glad you are O.K., I really enjoyed following the build of that car, your work was amazing & it showed when it really needed too!
Glad that you are OK, sorry about the car. I know the feeling and the loss, been there. If there is anything I an do to help, let me know.
Glad you are doing alright Todd and sorry to see the damage to the Malibu, You built a quality safe cage that surly saved your life. Best wishes on the recovery and I'm sure you will build another top notch ride.
3/28/2014 RIP Juli Pasch the love of my life for ever
WOW !!! Don't even know what to say Todd That car was a work of art and it's obvious you built it right. Glad you're ok, that's what really matters !!
Really glad to see you made it out only beat up and sore. I like hearing that you wear a head and neck restraint. I wish more people would.
Bad deal about the car but better it than you.
2017 and 2018 Osage Casinos Tulsa Raceway Park No-Box Champion
2018 Div4 Goodguys Hammer award winner
Hate to hear that. Glad you are not seriously injured and your chassis did it’s job. Hope you are back at it soon!
The Pull-Out....for when you want to work smarter, not harder!!!
Sorry to hear this but glad you are ok, very nice looking car.
WiredTwoWin race car wiring
So...about those chinese helmets (in another thread)....
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3000 lbs on springs going 160 mph, running on an index. I gotta admit I've looked at this class and thought to myself, I'd have something that would slow down in a hurry without touching the brakes. Sprag converter slipping close to zero percent, was one idea that came to mind. The problem is it's on springs, with nowhere near enough downforce.
That was a beautiful car! Great attention to detail.
Very sorry for your misfortune. That's a huge loss. I can't imagine how you feel.
So glad you're ok.
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