Motor sports is a game of glory, life and death to mankind. When someone wins, it’s glory, and when someone dies, it’s tragedy. Unfortunately, motor sports today has lost another champion. This time, it’s British driver and two time Indy 500 winner, Dan Wheldon.
It was on last weekend’s final leg of the IndyCar World series in Las Vegas Speedway, on lap 11 he caught in a 15 car wreck which caused a few cars caught with explosions. Wheldon’s car flew into the air and crashed violently into the wall. The race was indefinitely stopped and Wheldon was brought into the hospital, only to succumb to his injuries two hours later. He was 33, leaving his wife and 2 young children.
The crash, which is one of the worst in modern motor sports, is a tragic one since a life was lost. Many drivers, shocked and sadden with this tragedy, drove a 5 lap tour around the circuit two hours after the accident to mark final respect to this fallen driver. Wheldon, who came to United States after failing to secure funding to race in Europe, has proven to be a great driver. His achievements in the IndyCar series in the US including 16 wins, 2003’s rookie of the year title, and won the famous Indy 500 race, twice, which includes this year’s edition as well.
The video shows how horrible and tragic the crash was.
Tributes from drivers all around the world were pouring to him and his family, including Jenson Button, who was his fierce rival during their karting days. Quote from Button, “I have so many good memories of racing with Dan in the early 90s, a true fighter. We’ve lost a legend in our sport but also a great guy… I can’t begin to imagine what his family are going through and my thoughts are with them at this very difficult time.”
Even more hollow full words from this year’s champion and former team mate of Wheldon, Dario Franchitti on his reaction after securing this year title “No… I’d like to say thank you to all the fans for showing so much respect for Dan, it was a very nice thing. I was thinking about Dan [as he drove the five-lap salute after the tragic news was announced] and all stories and all the fun times we had. It’s just really, really sad. It’s the ugly side of our sport.”
Lastly, our thoughts to his family and friends. RIP Wheldon.