Race driver Dan Wheldon has died after a horrific 15 car accident during the Las Vegas Indy 300 series finale at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The 33-year-old British born Wheldon died after injuries he sustained during the accident when his car went flying through the air into a fence before bursting into flames. Wheldon was a two time Indianapolis 500 winner, 2003 rookie of the year and a 16-time IndyCar race winner. Three other drivers including JR Hilderbrand, Pippa Mann and Will Power were injured in the crash.
Officials called off the race immediately after the accident and after learning of Wheldon’s death, his fellow drivers went on to perform a five-lap run in his honour. The fatal crash came soon after some drivers voiced their concerns about the dangerous speeds reached at the Las Vegas circuit, as cars were traveling at up to 225 miles per hour during practice. Some drivers have called the crash the very worst they have ever seen.
IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard issued a statement saying that IndyCar “is very sad to announce that Dan Wheldon has passed away from unsurvivable injuries.”
British Formula One drivers Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton described Wheldon as a “talented and inspirational” driver.
Dan Wheldon is survived by his wife Susie and two sons Sebastian, two, and Oliver, six-months old.