Dan Wheldon Dies in Las Vegas IndyCar Crash

Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon died today after a massive crash during the Indy 300 at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Three other riders were injured in the fiery 15-car wreck.

IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard said:

“IndyCar is very sad to announce that Dan Wheldon has passed away from unsurvivable injuries. 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.”

USA Today reports that many of the drivers at the Indycar race said that the wreck that killed Wheldon was the worst they had ever seen.

Danica Patrick described the event:

“It was like a movie scene which they try to make as gnarly as possible. 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.

The crash occurred on the second turn of the 13th lap. Incidental contact sent cars flying into the air, into the walls, and into eachother. Wheldon’s car flew over a competitors car and crashed into a wall.

Ryan Briscoe said:

“I’ll tell you, I’ve never seen anything like it. 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.”

Dan Wheldon won the Indy 500 for the second time this May. The Washington Post reports that he was airlifted from the Las Vegas track to a nearby hospital. Wheldon is the first Indycar driver to die after an on-track crash since 2006, when Paul Dana was killed during a practice session at the Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The remainder of the Indy300 was cancelled. But drivers returned to the track a few hours after the crash to do a five-lap tribute for Dan Wheldon.

Wheldon’s former car owner, Chip Ganassi said:

“What can you say? We’re going to miss him. Everybody in IndyCar died a little today.”

Dan Wheldon is survived by his wife Susie Behm and his two sons.

Share this article: Dan Wheldon Dies in Las Vegas IndyCar Crash
More from Inquisitr