Small Race Tracks Strive for Safety
GRAIN VALLEY, Mo. — Five people are recovering after a crash at a Sedalia race track on Sunday. A driver lost control of his modified patrol car and plowed straight into the pit area hitting five spectators.
Two of the people were taken by air ambulance to nearby hospitals. Safety is the number one thing on Grain Valley Speedway owner Dennis Shrout’s mind.
“As a track owner and the other drivers, I mean it always has to kind of be in the back of their minds that something like that can happen to them,” he said.
Shrout is prepping his dirt track for races on Friday. He says before the day hits, they take several safety precautions even though he says wrecks happen all the time. He says it’s rare that anyone gets transported to the hospital.
“When the drivers come in we take them over and check safety belts, how much, just welds on the car, just looking for stuff that you can do in here in just a few minutes,” Shrout said.
He says there’s also some protection for fans sitting in the stands.
“If you notice our fence, there are cables in it where if something does come off or a car does come off, that’s a catch cave,” he said.
Shrout said there didn’t appear to be catch cave on the fence at Sedalia’s race tracks. He says the pit was in the middle of the track unlike theirs. He says he believes for any race track safety comes first.
There were two accidents on Sunday’s race at the fair. A 15-year-old driver is in the hospital in serious but stable condition. State Fair organizers say tickets to Sunday’s races will be refunded. Click here to see how to get a refund.