Monday, July 19, 2004

Junior escapes blaze

Despite the fact that this was a bye week for NASCAR, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. barely escaped tragedy behind the wheel this Sunday.  Junior spent his off week practicing for an American Le Mans Series race at Infineon Speedway near San Francisco.  Junior was driving a Corvette and was involved in a seemingly minor crash.  But, the crash caused gasoline to pour out of his car, and the Vette burst into flames.  Junior was apparently dazed from the wreck and didn't move as flames engulfed him in the cockpit.  The images from the in-car camera were terrifying.  Finally, the emergency crew dragged Junior to safety.  Earnhardt spent Sunday night in the hospital for observations.  He was released today with only first and second degree burns on his legs and chin.  Junior will not miss this Sunday's Nextel Cup race.