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Fans escape serious injury at NHRA race in N.C.

5:29 PM, Apr 20, 2013   |    comments
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(USA TODAY) -- Fans at an NHRA drag race near Charlotte escaped serious injury on Saturday after the body of one car blew off and sailed into the front of the grandstands.

During the final qualifying session of the day at zMax Dragway, the engine in Robert Hight's Funny Car exploded and sent the car's carbon fiber body flying toward the East Stands. Hight continued the run and was uninjured, but two fans sustained minor scrapes after a piece of the body hit a railing and landed on a pedestrian walkway.

Most of the body landed on another railing and ultimately ended up on the apron separating the track from the stands.

The two fans were evaluated at an on-site care center and released, the track said. Fans gaped at a dented railing where a piece of the car hit and shook their heads in disbelief.

"I asked where the body landed and they said, 'In the stands,' " Hight told USA TODAY Sports after his run. "It was like, 'Oh, man...' But they came back to me real quick and said no one was injured and everybody is good. That's not what you want (to) have happening."

The "4-Wide Nationals" event is unique on the Mello Yello Drag Racing Series circuit. All other drag strips have two lanes, but zMax uses all four of its lanes to run cars at the same time.


USA Today

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