Indy Mile Flat Track Grand National Cancelled

08/19/2011 @ 2:20 pm, by Jensen Beeler6 COMMENTS

“The examination of the wreckage is expected to continue for an indefinite period of time,” said a release from the promoters. “This has forced the closing of the Grandstand and one-mile dirt track to events until the investigation is completed and the debris is removed.”

“Losing a round is nothing compared to the loss of life,” said AMA Pro Racing’s Director of Flat Track, Dan Johnsen, “and our hearts go out to everyone affected by this tragedy. AMA Pro Racing’s thoughts are with all of those now coping with the after-effects.”

Source: AMA Pro Racing; Photo: © 2011 Scott Jones Photography – All Rights Reserved

  • Butch

    OK, I was waiting for someone else to say it, but no one else has. So flame me at will for being an inconsiderate jerk, but I think cancelling the Indy Mile sucks and I’m not happy about it. Yes, the stage collapse and death of six individuals is undeniably tragic and the stage debris needs to be examined to prevent this type of thing in the future to the extent possible. However, when planes crash on runways, the debris is typically relocated to a hanger for examination. Major airports are not closed to air traffic for weeks. On average 90 to 100 people die PER DAY in traffic accidents, but we don’t see roads and highways closed for weeks at a time for accident reconstruction. They have, or should have, the engineering specs of the stage, they have video of the accident from many angles, they can estimate wind speeds at the time, they have the damaged supports to look at, etc. The debris should have been cleaned up within a week and the race should have proceeded from there…IMO.

  • Tee-Dot

    Pretty disrespectful to the victims and their families to hold a sporting event at a location where people were injured and killed the week before.

    The difference between an accident on a highway or airport runway and the one @ the State Fairgrounds is that there’s really no way to close a highway or runway for an ongoing investigation (especially one that’s expected to go on for an indefinite time). They serve a real purpose, other than just to entertain us.

    Even if there is no investigation, to hold a sporting event @ the Fairgrounds on the same ground of last week’s tragedy would be extremely disrespectful to all those involved. Good for the AMA.

  • Butch

    Come on Tee-Dot. They ran the MotoGP within 2 hours of Peter Lenz’s death last year on the same track. There was no disrespect then, and there would be no disrespect now.

  • Tee-Dot

    My response to that is that fatalities in racing are an accepted risk. Nobody shows up as a concert spectator and expects to be killed.

    Also, Peter Lenz died at IMS, not the state fairgrounds.

    Local to Indy, fyi.

  • Butch

    I know where he died…I was there, fyi. I said the MotoGP race ran on the same track he died, not that he died at the fairgrounds.

    Death is death regardless of your activity at the time.. Heart stops, respiration stops, people grieve. I work in healthcare, fyi. I’ll venture to guess I’ve been at the bedside and curbside of more death than you have. It’s always tragic. But fortunately life goes on and we should celebrate that it does.

    The story states that they can’t clear the debris because the examination of the material continues, not because the area is now hallowed ground as you imply. Therefore my point is that the examination of the material could be done at an alternate location or more quickly than it is.

    If you’re making the case that the delay is to show respect for the victims, then that’s a different argument. Either way, I’m sure we would disagree on that too.

  • Tee-Dot

    I’m not making a case for “hallowed ground”. Sure, it’s got something to do w/ the big picture, but it’s not the sole reason for canceling the race. I’m stating the difference b/t a racing accident (which is an accepted part of the sport) and a mechanical failure that resulted in the deaths of five concert spectators – okay, four spectators and a stage rigger.

    I’ll guess that this investigation is taking longer because someone is going to be at fault, be it the company who was subcontracted to build the stage, the state, the fairgrounds, or some other related entity. An auto accident, by comparison, is a much simpler investigation. How did it happen? Who was at fault? (driver a, driver b or…??)

    My misunderstanding of the Peter Lenz death location was due to the vagueness of your post. Oops! Congratulations on being a healthcare worker, though!