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Old 04-04-2005, 10:11 AM
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Unhappy Local Tragic and Freak Racing Accident Kills Two

Some sad news to report; A well known and respected veteran female drag racer was involved in a freak and tragic accident that also killed her son. It happened at a drag race over the weekend at the Tulsa Raceway Park.

Here's the news report for the tragic and freak accident:

http://www.kotv.com/main/home/storie...age=1&id=80717


Here is here website:

http://www.shellyhoward.com/

Rest in Peace, Shelly and Brian. Hopefully they're up in Heaven, racin' from cloud to cloud.
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Last edited by cigarxtc; 04-04-2005 at 10:15 AM.
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Old 04-04-2005, 11:08 AM
Silver Streak Silver Streak is offline
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The other tech I work with was at the starting line when this happened, and was standing next to the track worker who commented to the press. As usual, the news media has twisted the story. It was not called a freak accident. What was said was closer to: "Accidents are part of racing, but nobody expects to see something this freaky". I was "this close" to also being on the starting line when this happened. It's a miracle there weren't more people hurt.
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Old 04-05-2005, 11:07 AM
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Heya Joe, Were you racing that day? That would be a freak accident in my books. Sure, racing autos is inherently dangerous and there are many risks. I'm sure many of us have seen the types of crashes that can occur at drag strips, like the front end getting airborne, the bodies of funny cars blowing off, motors and transmissions exploding, cars hitting walls and bending or breaking in half, even upside down slides down the track. Never in my wildest imagination would I have thought that a race car would end up going down the track and then suddenly come 180 back to the starting line at around 200mph. The fact that a mother and her son were killed in the same freak accident just boggles my mind. No matter what, it is a sad and tragic end to their lives.
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Old 04-05-2005, 11:23 AM
Silver Streak Silver Streak is offline
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Not at TRP. I was working at an RC car race that weekend. If it hadn't been for that I probably would have been standing at the starting line also.

I agree that it was a freak accident, but that is not what was said by the track official that was quoted in the article I saw.

BTW, Don Garlits many years ago had the same thing happen to him. The only reason it isn't remembered is that he got it shut down before it got back to the crowd. The cars were much slower then.
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Old 04-05-2005, 12:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Streak
BTW, Don Garlits many years ago had the same thing happen to him. The only reason it isn't remembered is that he got it shut down before it got back to the crowd. The cars were much slower then.
Ya, I might be too young to remember or know anything about that instance. I don't want to take away from the gravity of the situation, but in the back of my mind I was wondering why her car didn't shut down? I'm sure there is a manual kill switch, maybe two? Would there also be some kind of automatic kill switch installed to help prevent something like that from happening if the driver can't hit the manual kill switch? I'm not too familar with the internals of those drag cars. I wonder if it would be helpful to have an automatic kill switch that would shut it down if the car reached above a certain degree of incline?

I wanted to get some more info on it, but her website is now shutdown and the TulsaRacewayPark.com forum is also shut down for now.
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Old 04-05-2005, 12:50 PM
Silver Streak Silver Streak is offline
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Try oksca.com for more info. They are the underground drag site in Tulsa.

It is believed that she was unconsious once the car flipped. I don't think any kind of shut down will work when you're burning nitromethan. That stuff makes its own oxygen and gets the engine hot enough to sustain combustion without spark plugs. As long as the throttle's open, it's gonna go.
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Old 04-05-2005, 08:54 PM
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What ever happened, it's a terrible tragedy. My heart goes out to their family and friends.

Mike
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Old 04-05-2005, 09:24 PM
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Joe makes a good point, nitrometh. is a different ballgame. But, Ron has the right idea, atleast with the whole incline-switch. The alc. funny car we worked on (if I remember correctly) had two kill switches, one on the steering wheel, one on the ignition (I think... been about 3 years ago). Though what I was thinking, is they could maybe go to a setup more like what they use in the monster trucks... a remote kill switch controlled by the track officials... maybe one that killed the fuel pump or something... eh?

Regardless what safety measures will come about now, it's too bad that it took the life of two people to make this change. Samething happened when Dale Sr. was killed... month later they mandate the HANS and begin to use soft-barriers.

STan
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Old 04-06-2005, 10:52 AM
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Here's an article from Channel 8, for an interview with the Husband and father. Apparently, the son, Brian was also mentally challenged. My prayers and heart felt sadness go out to Paul and his family.

http://www.ktul.com/news/stories/0405/218291.html
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Last edited by cigarxtc; 04-06-2005 at 10:55 AM.
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Old 04-06-2005, 02:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Traxxis
Samething happened when Dale Sr. was killed... month later they mandate the HANS and begin to use soft-barriers.
Yep, it took a superstar to get anything done though. The lives of Adam Petty, Kenny Irwin and a third driver who's name I can't remember were not important enough to justify mandating the HANS.
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1990 F-150XLT Lariat Stillon the original engine with no squeaks or rattles at over 300k miles
4.9/M5OD/3.08
16.89@77.09
145 rwhp, 272 rwtq

2001 Lightning #127
13.18@104, no chip, no pulley, no nitrous

Confuscious say "Man who have no use for jackstand have promising career as jackstand".
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Old 04-06-2005, 02:48 PM
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