There is so much going into “race day” that is not so obvious unless the time is taken to look. The attention is drawn to the teams, the drivers, the cars and the unloading and preparation for racing. As such, that is the draw and the focus of the promotion and the ticket.
However, a needed and necessary aspect is operating in the background while in plain sight. The safety crew, officials and vehicle operators are all on hand to maintain fairness and safety for everyone. These folks are often overlooked as fans attention is drawn to the speed of racing on the track. Things change in the event of an accident when the caution is thrown and the track crews jump to action.
Racing can not proceed without these people. Their presence is required. Officials for maintaining the rules and continuity are required. Safety has to be paramount so track safety and medically equipped ambulance personnel are also required. They are present at every race from NASCAR, Indy and IMSA to local track U-Car to Late Model.
The safety crew and officials earn every cent they are paid. They operate in the background and are ready to jump at the flick of a switch with a goal of getting out, cleared and back to green racing as fast as possible. It is these men and women that rose to occasion recently at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, VA.
It could have been any track… A spin catches another which collects two more with another getting caught up in the mix. One gets pushed and pinned between a car at speed and the wall. It has been said that speed, in and of itself, does not cause damage. It is the sudden loss of speed that can cause injury. At that, the track crews act and are on the spot in seconds.
We like the action but seldom give attention to the crews checking the drivers, clearing the track and making it safe to go racing again. For them, this is that attention. For them, this is that “Thank You”.
The driver in this instance, was taken to a local hospital and treated for one or more fractured ribs. These injury incidents are rare at short tracks but it can and does happen. The applause for drivers is due but applause for the track crews is often quiet. It’s OK… They know their job and the importance of it.
But… A little applause doesn’t hurt…. Right…?
Racing at Motor Mile Speedway – April 29, 2023
Pure-4 Winner, Kirby Shipman.
LMSC Twin 1 Winner, Mike Looney.
Southern Ground Pounders Modified Winner, Jimmy Mullins.
Southern Ground Pounders Sportsman Winner, Jimmy Griffin.
Mod-4 Winner, Kevin Canter.
Sportsman Winner, Kyle Dudley.
Super Street Winner, Jimmy Mullins.
LMSC Twin 2 Winner, Mike Looney.
PHOTOS – Motor Mile Speedway – Southern Ground Pounders Night 2023