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 Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono

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Petr Hlavac
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PostSubject: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Mon 20 Aug 2018 - 12:08

I guess most of you have heard about it already. Robert Wickens had a horrible crash yesterday at Pocono Speedway. Watching it live, it was the worst experience since Las Vegas 2011 and Pocono 2015. Anytime an Indycar goes up into the fence it's bad. I really feared he's dead. All the interviews were very somber and it was obvious that everybody feared the worst. And it took so long (some 45 minutes) until they finally announced that he's awake and alert. Of course, he suffered serious injuries. According to the latest reports, he has broken both ankles, right hand, there's something wrong with his spine, he has a pulmonary contusion. Let's hope he will fully recover.

It was a freak accident, but the outcome could have been much worse. Not only for Robert, but also for Ryan Hunter Reay. Rob's car literally ripped off a part of RHR's roll hoop. The gap between the flying wreck and RHR's head was some 15cm. This could have easily been a double fatality. As bad as it is for Wickens, i think Lady Luck was watching yesterday...


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Last edited by Petr Hlavac on Mon 20 Aug 2018 - 13:07; edited 1 time in total
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Richard Wilks
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Mon 20 Aug 2018 - 12:22

That accident is stupid at various levels, but the main ones are:

What the HELL was Ryan thinking??? Cutting his nose like that? They are driving way too close and way too dangerous in indycar today, and i blame the cars for that.

Why are the fences still made of individual poles like that? It's another fatality waiting to happen, like with Weldon...

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Petr Hlavac
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Mon 20 Aug 2018 - 12:39

Richard Wilks wrote:
That accident is stupid at various levels, but the main ones are:

What the HELL was Ryan thinking??? Cutting his nose like that? They are driving way too close and way too dangerous in indycar today, and i blame the cars for that.

Why are the fences still made of individual poles like that? It's another fatality waiting to happen, like with Weldon...

Well, i don't agree with Michael Andretti very often, but this time i think he's right. It was effectively the first lap of a 500-miler. Wickens was barely there, RHR still gave him enough time and space to back off. Sadly, Wickens pushed too hard, given the circumstances. RHR isn't a wrecker, i see it as a very unfortunate racing incident.

And those fences... yeah... they're bad. Maybe the poles could be positioned further from the track, something like safety nets at downhill skiing. But i guess it would require a major redesign. And i doubt anybody (except for Indianapolis) would be willing to do it, as the current fencing is gravely dangerous only for Indycar. NASCAR simply rips through anything and it doesn't endanger the driver that much.

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Karel Marciniszyn
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Tue 21 Aug 2018 - 9:05

huge crash...on the other hand the main part of carbody looks to stay intact...

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Petr Hlavac
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Tue 21 Aug 2018 - 9:30

Karel Marciniszyn wrote:
huge crash...on the other hand the main part of carbody looks to stay intact...

Yes, the DW12 tub is incredibly strong. G-force inside the cockpit is what harms the drivers. Looking at slow-mo replay, I also think that HANS failed. Sadly, that might be the reason why his spinal injuries are rather serious. He underwent a surgery on his spine and there are fears that he might be paralyzed Crying or Very sad

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Jason White
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Wed 31 Oct 2018 - 8:46

Sad news Sad

https://www-m.cnn.com/2018/10/26/motorsport/robert-wickens-paraplegic-indycar-crash-spt-intl/?r=https%3A%2F%2Fwww-m.cnn.com%2F2018%2F10%2F30%2Fentertainment%2Fkanye-west-politics%2Findex.html%3Fr%3Dhttps%253A%252F%252Fwww.cnn.com%252F

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Alberto Ibaņez
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Wed 31 Oct 2018 - 9:47

Sad indeed  pale There is a spark of hope though, in that he can do small movements. His powerful determination and maybe some medical advances in the future can hopefully improve his condition.

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Petr Hlavac
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Thu 1 Nov 2018 - 9:44

I believe he's one of people who's determination is way beyond imagination for most ordinary guys. His spinal cord hasn't been cut, which is a very good sign. I think he will walk again in a few years. Sadly, his racing career is over, but he's an exceptionaly stong young man, he'll have a good quality life. Of course, it's very sad and unfortunate. It's time to do something with that damned fence. One guy has just introduced his idea which in some way resembles the SAFER barrier. There solid posts are placed behind the net.

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Alberto Ibaņez
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Thu 1 Nov 2018 - 10:04

Agree Peter, the most important thing is that he recovers as much as possible - the second one is that lessons are learned from this! If nothing changes and everyone is just waiting with crossed fingers for the next guy not to break his spine, then they are just making Robert's crash meaningless.

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Petr Hlavac
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Thu 1 Nov 2018 - 10:35

It's not just Robert. This kind of accident has happened way too many times already. Aleshin, Kimball, Conway, Wheldon, Briscoe, Brack.. and I'm that's not all by far. Even NASCAR had several crashes into catch fencing with serious consquences. I'm no safety freak. I would dig out most paved runoff zones and cut off that stupid halo with a chainsaw. But catch fencing around ovals is a different case in my opinion. Once the car leaves the ground, you know it will be horrible and you can only hope for the best possible outcome.

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Michael Drechsler
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Wickens' horrible crash at Pocono   Thu 1 Nov 2018 - 17:18

Petr Hlavac wrote:
I believe he's one of people who's determination is way beyond imagination for most ordinary guys. [...] 

Reminds me a bit of Kristina Vogel, multiple Olympic and World Champion in track cycling, who was left paralysed after a practice accident. She knew right away what was going on and when she publicly revealed two months or so ago that she won't be able to walk anymore, there was nothing like anger, sorrow or regret, just the admission the whole situation really sucked. Instead she said she will be looking at what else to do once she settled in the new situation. That's probably the thing that separates most talented people from the champions: Their spirit, their way of thinking. No negativities, always looking forward, always looking for challenges. I'm pretty certain to see her again in some kind of parasports.

(You may have noticed I'm a bit into cycling as well Wink )

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