Published: Sunday February 24, 2013 MYT 7:06:00 AM
Updated: Sunday February 24, 2013 MYT 8:55:30 AM
Late crash mars Daytona Nationwide finish
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida: A horrific multi-car crash saw Kyle Larson's car launched into the air and then broken into pieces in the catch-fencing Saturday in the waning moments of the NASCAR Nationwide Series season-opener.
The wreck, which occurred almost as Tony Stewart was taking the chequered flag for victory, appeared to begin when Regan Smith was turned sideways and took several competitors behind him in a pack. Larson, making his first start in the NASCAR's second-tier series, then sailed into the catch-fencing.
Larson's car tore a hole in the fence, and his engine sheared off with debris flying into the stands.
None of the drivers was injured, but emergency medical personnel were sent into the grandstand to treat any injured fans.
Another big crash, involving 11 cars, took place with five laps remaining, with driver Michael Annett taken to hospital after hitting a barrier.
"We've always known since racing started this is a dangerous sport," Stewart said. "As much as we want to celebrate, I'm more concerned about the fans and the drivers right now." - AFP