Indy 500 winner Dan Wheldon died of injuries sustained in a 15-car wreck at the IndyCar World Championships in Las Vegas yesterday.
Wheldon was airlifted to a nearby hospital with undisclosed but severe injuries after the crash, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, but was unable to recover.
IndyCar announced his death shortly before 6:00 p.m. eastern time.
The crash occurred during the 13th lap of the race.
It appears Wheldon’s car went airborne, turned, and slammed into a semi-flexible “catch fence” above the wall. But the exact details of the crash and injuries he sustained are still undisclosed.
Three other drivers were hospitalized with more minor injuries.
Wheldon was 33 years old. He is most famous for winning the Indy 500 in both 2005 and 2011.
He leaves behind a wife and two sons.
Below you can find ancedotes, driver reactions, and videos of the crash.
Tragic scene in Vegas. Many drivers crying as they prepare to drive on a five-lap tribute around Las Vegas Moter Speedway.
Here’s what Danica Patrick told the AP after the crash:
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.
Others have said it’s the worst crash they’ve seen.
Three other drivers — Will Power, Pippa Mann, and JR Hildebrand — were injured in the crash. None of them were airlifted, and there is no indication that their injuries are as severe as Wheldon’s.
It appears that Dan Wheldon wrote a blog post for USA Today yesterday. It’s a chilling and saddening read. But it gives you an insight into Wheldon’s thoughts and frustrations on the eve of the race that would ultimately claim his life. Read it here.
8:20 p.m.: What Wheldon saw
Here’s video of the very beginning of the crash from Wheldon’s cockpit. It cuts away before he collides.
Here’s a full version of the replay from above:
Here’s one from an onboard camera of Will Power:
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