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NASCAR fans injured when car flies into fence at Daytona

February 23, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
At least 28 NASCAR fans were injured Saturday when a car flew into the fence at Daytona International Speedway and sent chunks of debris into the stands.

See photos of the NASCAR crash at Daytona International Speedway

The fiery, 13-car crash occurred on the last lap in the second-tier Nationwide Series race. As the field closed in on the finish line, it sent rookie Kyle Larson's car sailing into the fence. That's when large chunks of his car, including a tire, landed in the grandstands. The car itself had its entire front end sheared off, with the burning engine wedged through a gaping hole in the fence.

Shannon Speedway President Joie Chitwood said 14 fans were treated on site, and 14 others were taken to hospitals. Chitwood didn't give any updates on their conditions. Local officials said 19 fans were taken to neighboring hospitals, including two who were in critical condition but were later upgraded to stable.

Driver Michael Annett was sent to a local hospital, where his Richard Petty Motorsports team said he would be held overnight with bruising to his chest.

Upon feeling the impact, Larson said his first thought was not about himself, but of the fans.

"So as much as we want to celebrate right now and as much as this is a big deal to us, I'm more worried about the drivers and the fans that are in the stands right now because that was ? I could see it all in my mirror, and it didn't look good from where I was at."

After the accident, a forklift was used to pull Larson's engine out of the fence.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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