Safety Truck Crashes Into Race Truck At NASCAR Dirt Race

Offbeat


NASCAR’s much-anticipated return to dirt track racing isn’t going according to plan. After delays, the racing picked up again today only to be red-flagged after a safety truck bumped into a stricken race truck.

The racer whose truck was hit was John Hunter Nemechek, who had spun after making contact with racer Matt Crafton. Although the truck suffered only minimal damage, several seconds later Nemechek was hit again by another race truck that lost control.

The second hit popped Nemechek’s radiator, ending his race. Frustrated, the driver waited for the pack to come by again so that he could sarcastically applaud Crafton’s driving.

Read More: NASCAR Cup Series Racing On Dirt For First Time In 50 Years

As this was happening, under yellow flag conditions, the safety truck drove by, slipped, and smacked it again. The race was red-flagged to allows clean-up crews to clear heavy fluid on the track and the race resumed shortly after.

This is just the latest trouble to hit the event, which is taking place at Bristol Motor Speedway. The weekend’s events were widely publicized and anticipated because it was the first time in 50 years that NASCAR’s fastest series would return to a dirt track.

The problems with the dirt oval, though, have been coming fast and loose. Early running revealed that the series’ tires were being used up much more quickly than they are on the tarmac.

Rain early on Saturday, meanwhile, meant that the Bristol was more of a mud track than a dirt track and the NASCAR trucks could only run one lap before their windshields became so heavily caked in mud that drivers couldn’t see out.

More rain on Sunday meant that NASCAR simply chose not to run, pushing the racing until today instead. Running seems to be going well for the trucks, Nemechek’s crash(es) notwithstanding, which means that the Cup Series, NASCAR’s top rung, may be able to run as scheduled at 4 PM today.

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