Drag Strip Deaths


       2010-2020 Fatalities
Lamont Akins

Born: January 7, 1966

Died:  May 25, 2014

Buried:  Immaculate Conception Cemetery, Annandale, New Jersey

Age: 48

Full Name: Lamont Freeman-Akins


Drag Strip:   Maryland International Raceway, Budds Creek, Maryland

Event:   Custom T's Doorslammer Nationals

Accident Date:  May 25, 2014

Car: 1971 Plymouth Duster

Biographical: He lost control of his car after crossing the finish line. After crashing into a barrier he was thrown from the vehicle. He lived in Bethlehem, Lower Nazareth Township, Pennsylvania, and had been drag racing since 1986. He was survived by his wife, Lori, a daughter, Tenesha, and stepson, Thomas Rollins Akins. He was employed as an auto mechanic in North Plainfield, New Jersey.



"New details emerge in fatal drag racing crash that claimed Lower Nazareth Township man," LehighValleyLive.com, May 26, 2014.

"Veteran racer Lamont Akins killed in tragic crash in Maryland," Dragzine.com, May 27, 2014.

"Obituary," Star Ledger, May 30, 2014


"Lower Nazareth Township man dies in racecar crash, according to wife," LehighValleyLive.com, May 25, 2014

"Fatal accident claims grudge racer at Maryland International Raceway," DragIllustrated.com, May 27, 2014


Jerry Baxter

Born:  September 13, 1948

Died:  January 23, 2010


Age:  61

Full Name:  Jerry Wyman Baxter


Drag Strip:  Palm Beach International Raceway, Florida


Accident Date:  January 23, 2010

Car:  Super Pro Chevrolet Corvette

Biographical:  During the first round of eliminations of Super Pro, he was racing Tim Nimmo's dragster.  He continued speeding after crossing the finish line at a speed estimated at 150 to 160 MPH.  He went through the sand trap, the safety net, through a gravel area, and over a berm into a canal. He was transported to St. Mary's Medical Center where he later died of his injuries.  He lived in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.


"Obituary," FuneralDigest.com (http://www.funeraldigest.com/obituaries/?id=138947831)

Social Security Death Index (Jerry W. Baxter, born Sep. 13, 1948, died Jan. 23, 2010, SS# issued in Alabama) 

"Palm Beach Gardens man crashes, dies at PB International Raceway Saturday," Palm Beach Post, January 25, 2010 (http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/palm-beach-gardens-man-crashes-dies-at-pb-194187.html)

"Drag racer killed at PBIR," CompetitionPlus Magazine (http://www.competitionplus.com/index.php/drag-racing/news/13123-drag-racer-killed-at-pbir)


"Drag racer recalls PBIR tragedy from the opposite lane," CompetitionPlus Magazine (http://www.competitionplus.com/index.php/drag-racing/news/13063-drag-racer-recalls-pbir-tragedy-from-the-opposite-lane)


This photo was taken of Baxter on his last run, a fatal run.

Edson Beber


Died:  March 16, 2014


Age: 46

Full Name:  


Drag Strip: Santa Catarina, Brazil

Event:   Arrancadas de Caminhoes

Accident Date:  March 16, 2014

Car: exhibition truck

Biographical: He died in a crash that occurred after crossing the finish line on a scrape-surfaced beach traditional truck drag race.



"Truck loses control while running a drag race in Brazil," LiveLeak.com, Mar. 17, 2014


Brazilian truck drag racing at Santa Catarina beach

Anita Board

Born:  November 8, 2009

Died:   November 11, 2017


Age:  8

Full Name: 


Drag Strip:   Perth Motorplex, Kwinana Beach, Australia

Event:   Goldenstates Championships

Accident Date:   November 11, 2017

Car:  "Pony Power" 210cc Junior Dragster

Biographical:  In this tragic accident, the young Australian girl had just turned eight years old only three days before making a licensing run in her new Junior Dragster. She lost control and hit the concrete retaining wall. She was transported to a Rockingham hospital and from there, to Prince Margaret Hospital, where she died from her severe injuries.


News report


"8-year old Australian Junior Dragster racer tragically killed in crash," DragZine.com, Nov. 12, 2017.

Tracy Carter, email communication to site administrator, Nov. 13, 2017


Darren Bryant


Died:  May 14, 2016


Age:  39

Full Name:  Darren Dwayne Bryant

Nickname:   "Nunk"

Drag Strip:   Selma Motorsports Park, Alabama


Accident Date:  May 14, 2016

Car:  Chevrolet S10 pickup truck

Biographical:  He was killed while racing his small pickup truck on this 1/8th-mile strip. The racer in the other lane veered into Bryant's lane, rear-ending his truck, causing it to go into the other lane and flip over.  He died while being transported to a Montgomery hospital. He was from Montgomery. He was survived by his wife, Angela, and two children.


"Montgomery man killed in crash at Selma Motorsports Park," WSFA.com, May 15, 2016

"Family urges caution after Montgomery dad killed in drag racing accident," WTVM.com, May 16, 2016

Dave Sorenson, email communication to site administrator, May 17, 2016


Dan Cerio

Born:  May 13, 1989

Died:  May 5, 2012

Buried: St. Mary's Cemetery, Manlius, New York

Age:  22

Full Name: Daniel Robert Cerio, Jr.


Drag Strip:   U.S. 131 Motorsports Park, Martin, Michigan

Event:   Aeroquip Outlaw Sled Series

Accident Date: May 5, 2012

Car:  snowmobile

Biographical: Racing his modified snowmobile during eliminations, he slammed into two walls at a speed of over 170 MPH.  His snowmobile went over the second wall and he died at the scene.  He was from Manlius, New York, and was survived by his parents and two siblings.


"Don Cerio's death believed to be the third fatality at Martin's U.S. 131 Motorsports Park," MLive.com, May 8, 2012

"Racer, 22, dies in Martin Dragway crash," WOOD TV8, May 5, 2012

Mike DeVries, email communication to site administrator, May 8, 2012

Social Security Death Index:  Daniel R. Cerio, b. May 13, 1989, d. May 5, 2012, SS # issued in Massachusetts 


http://obits.syracuse.com/obituaries/syracuse/obituary.aspx?n=daniel-robert-cerio&pid=157504150 (accessed 7/1/12)


Jose Cruz

Born: March 21, 1959

Died: July 11, 2011


Age: 51

Full Name: 


Drag Strip:  Atco Raceway, New Jersey


Accident Date: September 15, 2010

Car:  1999 Chevrolet Monte Carlo

Biographical:  He crashed into the barrier wall and his car burst into flames.  He spent ten months in a hospital burn unit until succumbing from his injuries. He was survived by his wife, Evelyn, who brought suit against the race track.  He resided in Brooklyn, New York.


"Atco Raceway sued for negligence in racer's death," New Jersey 101.5, Aug. 22, 2012

Social Security Death Index (states his death date was July 12, 2011)


Ronnie Davis

Born:  1950

Died:  April 10, 2016

Buried:  Floral Hills Memory Gardens, Tucker, Georgia

Age:  66

Full Name: 

Nickname:  "The King"

Drag Strip: Rockingham Dragway, North Carolina

Event:   PDRA Spring Nationals

Accident Date:  April 9, 2016

Car:  1963 Corvette

Biographical:  He had just completed a final qualifying run in 4.130 seconds. His car veered left, then shot back across the track into the other lane and in front of Mark Malcuit's Camaro. The car vaulted over the right guardrail and began barrel-rolling. He was first transported to FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital in Pinehurst, then airlifted to UNC Medical Center in Chapel Hill where he died the following day from his injuries. Ian Tocher, a photographer/journalist covering the race was injured. Davis was the current PDRA Top Sportsman champion and lived in Suwanee, Georgia.



"Ronnie Davis succumbs to injuries sustained in Rockingham crash," Dragzine.com, Apr. 10, 2016


Kasey Dixon-Grainger

Born: March 22, 1988

Died: August 28, 2011

Buried: Billingham Cemetery

Age:  23

Full Name:  


Drag Strip:  York Raceway, Melbourne Airfield, near Pocklington, East Yorkshire, England

Event:   2-day drag meet

Accident Date:  August 28, 2011

Car:  Ford Cortina Mark 1

Biographical:  He crossed the finish line traveling at a speed of 132 MPH when his car veered sideways and he rolled over several times.  The car burst into flames and attempts by track safety personnel to revive the young man were unsuccessful.  His parents, Paul and Tanya, also racers, witnessed the accident. He was from New Road, Billingham, Cleveland.



"Drag racer, 23, dies in 130 mph finishing line crash as car rolls over and catches fire," Mail Online, Aug. 28, 2011

"Father's horror as he describes the moment he saw son's Ford Cortina drag racer flipped over and burst into flames, killing him instantly," Mail Online, Jan. 24, 2012


"Drag racer, 23, dies in 130 mph finishing line crash as car rolls over and catches fire," Mail Online, Aug. 28, 2011
Tommy Dunford

Born:  March 16, 1957

Died:  July 23, 2017

Buried:  Burkes Garden Central Cemetery, Burkes Garden, Virginia

Age:  60

Full Name:   Thomas Albert Dunford


Drag Strip:  Maryland International Raceway, Budds Creek, Maryland

Event:   Super Bowl of Bracket Racing

Accident Date:  July 23, 2017

Car: dragster

Biographical:  During the second round of eliminations, which he won, he failed to stop, going off the end of the strip. He had been clocked at 146 MPH before he plowed through the sand trap and safety netting, coming to rest in some trees. His parachute never deployed on the 1/8th-mile track. He was from Tazewell, Virginia.


Tribute to Thomas Dunford, 1957-2017, by BracketRaces.com


Tracy Carter, email communication to site administrator, July 24, 2017

"Racer dies in track crash," Leonardtown Enterprise, July 26, 2017

"Driver in fatal crash at Maryland International Raceway identified," Southern Maryland NewsNet.com, July 23, 2017

"Racer fatally injured at Maryland Int'l Raceway bracket event," DragZine, July 23, 2017


Roger Garten

Born: March 1946

Died: June 28, 2015


Age:  69

Full Name:  


Drag Strip:  Auto Club Famoso Raceway, Bakersfield, California

Event:   Saturday Night Nitro

Accident Date:  June 27, 2015

Car: "War Horse" 1973 Mustang Nostalgia Funny Car

Biographical: He had qualified with a 5.92 for the event. He was racing Matt Bynum in the "Nitro Nick" funny car during eliminations at night when he crossed the center line around the 300-foot mark. The cars made contact causing the bodies of both cars to be torn from their chassis in the resultant crash. Garten was transported by ambulance to Kern Medical Center where he succumbed to his injuries early Sunday morning. Bynum was not injured. He retired from drag racing in 1975 after winning the NHRA Division 7 championship in the original "War Horse" funny car. After retiring from a career in the construction industry in 2010, he got back into drag racing with his former partner, Mike Tocco. They built a new "War Horse" and campaigned in with success in nostalgia funny car events. He was a native of Fallbrook, California, and was survived by his wife, Carlene.



Tracy Carter, email communication to site administrator, July 5, 2015

Marty Young, email communication to site administrator, July 12, 2015

"Nostalgia funny car racer Roger Garten kille in Bakersfield crash," dragzine.com


John Geytenbeek

Born:  June 1958

Died: August 22, 2010

Buried: Leusden, The Netherlands

Age: 52

Full Name: John van Gaytenbeek

Nickname: "John Canada" or "The Canadian"

Drag Strip: Drachten Airstrip

Event:   The Drachten Finals

Accident Date:  August 22, 2010

Car:   T/F Harley motorcycle

Biographical:  He was a very experienced drag racer in the Super Twin Top Gas motorcycle ranks.  He was driving his new top fuel Harley bike which he had been testing for several months on various drag strips.  He was making his final run of the day down the 1/8th mile track when the engine exploded about 100 meters from the start.  The explosion was so great that the cylinders and head were lifted from the block, breaking the upper frame.  Efforts were made by safety personnel on the scene to save his life, but he succumbed.


Marcel Overre, email communication with site administrator, Aug. 1, 2012


Marcel Overre, email communication with site administrator, Aug. 1, 2012


Tommy Giardino

Born:  August 17, 1956

Died:  October 11, 2010

Buried:  Holmdel Cemetery, Holmdel, New Jersey

Age:  54

Full Name:  Thomas J. Giardino


Drag Strip:  Atco Raceway, New Jersey

Event:  NHRA Division 1 Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series

Accident Date:  October 2, 2010

Car:  Super Gas 

Biographical:  While racing Jason Kenney in the first round of eliminations, he crossed into the other lane past the finish line.  The car hit the retaining wall on the other side.  He was transported to Cooper Hospital in Camden where he succumbed from his injuries nine days later.  He was from Colts Neck, New Jersey, and was survived by his wife, Karen, two sons and a daughter.  He owned an auto parts store in Staten Island, New York.



"Obituary," Asbury Park Press, Oct. 13, 2010

http://drr.infopop.cc/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/75460652/m/971107164 (accessed 10/23/10)

http://www.dragracecentral.com/DRCStory.asp?ID=216645 (accessed 10/23/10)

Find a Grave website


Find a Grave

Bradley Glass

Born:  January 2, 1957

Died:  June 24, 2017


Age:  60

Full Name:  Bradley George Glass


Drag Strip:  Byron Dragway, Illinois


Accident Date:  June 24, 2017



Biographical:  After crossing the finish line, he lost control of his car. It crossed over the track, hitting a grass embankment, after which the car rolled several times, while ejecting him. He was from Mason, Ohio.


"Mason, Ohio, man, 60, dies Saturday in Byron Dragway accident," rrstar.com, June 24, 2017

Dave Sorenson, email communication to site administrator, June 25, 2017


Tim Gurganious


Died:  December 24, 2016


Age:  28

Full Name:  Timothy Raynard Gurganious


Drag Strip:  North Myrtle Beach Drag Strip, South Carolina


Accident Date:  December 24, 2016

Car:  motorcycle

Biographical:  From Wilmington, North Carolina, he died after crashing on his motorcycle at a race on Saturday night.


"Motorcycle racer from NC dies after wreck at SC drag strip," News & Record, Dec. 25, 2016


Tim Hay

Born:  January 14, 1961

Died:  August 21, 2010

Buried: Burleson Memorial Cemetery, Texas

Age:  49

Full Name:  Timothy Allen Hay


Drag Strip:  Eddyville Raceway, Oskaloosa, Iowa

Event:  Fuel Altered World Finals

Accident Date:  August 21, 2010

Car:  "High Voltage Hayride" AA/FA

Biographical:  His car was on a good run in the final round.  At about 300 feet, he smoked the tires, went sideways, and ran head on into a guard rail.  He rolled several times.  He died from injuries suffered in the accident.  He was from Burleson, Texas, and was survived by his wife, Candy, and children, Shawn, T.J., and Kristen.



Bill Carrell, e-mail communication to site administrator, August 22, 2010

"Driver dies in Iowa raceway crash," MSNBC.com, August 22, 2010

Social Security Death Index


http://www.angelfire.com/tx/fuelcarfan/outlaws/hay.html   (accessed 8/22/10)

http://www.timhaytribute.com/  (accessed 12/15/10)

Find a Grave (photo courtesy of Ann Prater Whisenhunt)




Brett Henry

Born:  April 21, 1967

Died:  October 22, 2017

Buried:    Resthaven Gardens of Memory, Wichita, Kansas

Age:  50

Full Name:  Brett Carlton Henry


Drag Strip:  Auto Club Famoso Raceway, Bakersfield, California

Event:   NHRA California Hot Rod Reunion

Accident Date:  October 21, 2017

Car:  "Iron Mistress" AA/FA

Biographical:  During the opening round of qualifying, it is suspected that his throttle hung open after finishing his run. He lost control and slammed into the guardrail. He was transported to Kern Medical Center. His injuries were too severe and he passed away the following day. He was from Wichita, Kansas, and was survived by his wife, Laura, and two daughters and one son.


TV news report

Tribute video


Tracy Carter, email communication to site administrator, Oct. 23, 2017

"Wichita drag racer was part of nationally known racing family," Wichita Eagle, Oct. 23, 2017.

"Fuel alterd racer Brett Henry succumbs to injuries in CHRR crash," DragZine.


Gary Hough

Born: 1945

Died: September 10, 2011


Age:  66

Full Name: Gary Wayne Hough


Drag Strip:  Thunder Mountain Raceway, Kelowna, British Columbia


Accident Date: September 10, 2011

Car:  front-engined injected nitro dragster

Biographical:  He was testing his new dragster at the 1/8th mile drag strip when he went off the end of the race track.  Witnesses reported that his car did not appear to slow down at the end of the run and his chutes did not deploy.  He was airlifted to Kelowna General Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.  He was survived by his wife, Clara, and son and three daughters.


Norman Hechtkoff, e-mail communication to site administrator, Sep. 14, 2011

Adelaide Now, Sep. 16, 2011




SpeedZone Magazine Online



Bert Jackson

Born:  June 20, 1959

Died: September 9, 2011

Buried:  Forest Lawn Cemetery, Richmond, Virginia

Age:  51

Full Name: Lionel Jackson


Drag Strip:  Rockingham Dragway, North Carolina

Event:   American Drag Racing League Dragstock VIII

Accident Date: September 9, 2011

Car:  2007 Pontiac GTO Extreme Pro Stock

Biographical: During the third qualifying session, his car lost control just before reaching the 1/8th mile finish.  It first slammed into the right guard wall, careened across the track and hit the left guard wall, and then went into a series of barrel rolls.  He was transported to First Health Richmond Memorial Hospital in Rockingham where he was pronounced dead shortly after the accident.  He was from Glen Allen, Virginia, and was driving a car owned by Enoch Love.  He had driven for Love since 2004.  He was survived by his wife, Vaness, and two daughters.



CompetitionPlus: Drag Racing's Internet Magazine

American Drag Racing League website

Ron Tursovsky, e-mail communication to site administrator, September 14, 2011

"Local driver Bert Jackson killed in N.C. drag racing accident," Richmond Times-Dispatch, Sep. 10, 2011

"Obituary," Richmond Times-Dispatch, Sep. 13, 2011


American Drag Racing League website


Lawren Jones

Born: February 4, 1954

Died: July 6, 2013


Age: 59

Full Name:  Lawren D. Jones


Drag Strip: Albuquerque Dragway, Albuquerque, New Mexico


Accident Date: July 5, 2013

Car: 1955 Chevrolet Nomad Pro Mod

Biographical: He lost control of his car at over 200 MPH while making test and licensing runs.  The car rolled several times, crashed into a barrier, and then finally crashed into several vehicles.  He was transported by helicopter to a hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. He resided in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and was survived by his wife, Ruth, and a son and daughter.



Tracy Carter, e-mail communication to site administrator, July 31, 2013

"Obituary," Albuquerque Journal, July 10, 2013

"Speedway open after fatal crash," KRQE.com, July 7, 2013



"Pro Mod racer Lawren Jones killed at Albuquerque Dragway," DragZine.com, July 8, 2013



Eugene Kern


Died:   September 21, 2014


Age: 44

Full Name: Evgeny Kern


Drag Strip: Evpatoria aircraft repair plant, Crimea, Russia

Event:   Cup of Russia Drag Racing Championship, Fifth Stage

Accident Date:  September 21, 2014

Car:  Nissan GT-R

Biographical: He was clocked at 186 MPH at 1,000 meters. For some reason, he did not slow down, but gained speed. His car slammed into a concrete barrier, hurtling through the air into a field where it overturned several times. Bystanders deemed the race track too short for Kern's speed. Airbags failed to deploy on impact. There were over sixty drivers at the event from Russia, Ukraine, Estonia, and Transistria. Kern was timed at 9.8 seconds, setting a drag race record in Russia.  Kern was the owner of a performance automotive business in Moscow called Turbo Drive.



"Nissan GT-R driver killed while drag racing in Crimea,"CarBuzz.com, Sep. 23, 2014

"Official statement on the death of Evgeny Kern," DragTimes.ru, Sep. 23, 2014


"Nissan GT-R driver killed while drag racing in Crimea,"CarBuzz.com, Sep. 23, 2014

"When setting the speed record was killed Russian racer," news2night.com



Jason Lumpkin

Born:  February 20, 1982

Died:  March 20, 2016

Buried:  Shannon Rose Hill Memorial Park, Fort Worth, Texas

Age:  34

Full Name: Jason Dale Lumpkin


Drag Strip:   Kansas International Dragway, Maize, Kansas

Event:   Import Face-Off

Accident Date: March 20, 2016

Car:  Honda CRX

Biographical: He was traveling about 150 MPH when he lost control of his race car near the finish line. His car hit the guardrail, went airborne, and rolled several times. He was extricated from the car and rushed to Via Christi Hospital at St. Francis where he was pronounced dead. He was from Fort Worth, Texas.


"Racer suffers fatal injuries at Import Face-Off event in Kansas," DragZine, Mar. 20, 2016

Tracy Carter, email to site administrator, Mar. 24, 2016

"Fort Worth drag racer killed in crash at Kansas race," Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Mar. 21, 2016


Sonny McCoy

Born: May 12, 1939

Died: April 10, 2011

Buried: Memory Gardens Cemetery, Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Age:  71

Full Name:  Alexander McCoy


Drag Strip:  Outer Banks Dragway, near Creswell, North Carolina


Accident Date: April 10, 2011


Biographical: A wishbone reportedly broke causing his car to slam into the retaining wall.  He was transported to Pitt Memorial Hospital in Greenville to treat what was initially thought to be broken bones, but they discovered he was bleeding internally.  He unfortunately passed away.  He resided in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, and was survived by his wife, two daughters, and a son.


"Friends remember racer killed in crash," Elizabeth City Daily Advance, Apr. 14, 2011

Social Security Death Index

http://www.classracer.com/classforum/showthread.php?t=33027  (accessed 5/30/11)

[Obituary], Daily Advance, Apr. 14, 2011


http://www.outerbanksspeedway.com/News___Announcments.html  (accessed 5/30/11)


Kenny Michalak

Born:  January 29, 1953

Died:  March 3, 2016


Age:  63

Full Name:  Kenneth Edward Michalak


Drag Strip:  Houston Motorsports Park, Texas


Accident Date:  March 3, 2016

Car: Mustang

Biographical:   While racing on the 1/8th-mile track, his car went out of control and he crashed into a barrier at the end of the shutdown area. He was going an estimated 100 MPH at impact. It is thought he may have suffered a heart attack during the fatal run. He was survived by his wife, Sheryl, and two children.


  • TV News Report


Tracy Carter, email communication to site administrator, Mar. 10, 2016

Obituary, Houston Chronicle, Mar. 7, 2016

"Kenny Michalak tragically passes in Houston racing crash," Dragzine, Mar. 4, 2016


David Minx

Born: July 26, 1980

Died:  September 28, 2014

Buried:  San Jacinto Memorial Park, Houston, Texas

Age:  34

Full Name:  David William Minx


Drag Strip:  Houston Motorsports Park, Texas

Event:   Grudge Drags

Accident Date:  September 28, 2014

Car: 1967 Camaro "Mighty Mouse"

Biographical:  His car failed to stop before slamming into a safety net and water barrels at the end of the 1/8th mile race track. Police investigators preliminary stated that the cause of the crash was mechanical in nature, but were going to investigate further. The race track reportedly had recently had to shorten its shut-down area because of road construction on North Lake Houston Parkway. They had to give back some easement, which necessitated eliminating the pea gravel sand trap and additional safety nets which had been in place at the end of the race track before. Questions were raised about whether this had played a part in the fatal accident. He resided in Houston and was survived by his wife, Amber, and son, David, and other family members.



"Drag racer dead after an incident at Houston Motorsports Park," khou.com, Sep. 29, 2014

"Questions arise after fatal wreck on Harris County race track," click2Houston.com, Sep. 29, 2014

"Texas grudge racer killed in high speed crash at Houston race track," dragzine.com, Sep. 30, 2014


Obituary, Carter Funeral Home website

Rich Moore

Born:  October 19, 1955

Died:  June 9, 2012

Buried: Evergreen Memorial Park, Bedford Heights, Ohio

Age:  56

Full Name:  Richard Alvin Moore


Drag Strip:  Thompson Raceway Park, Ohio


Accident Date:  June 9, 2012 

Car:  Dodge Dart

Biographical:  While racing against Chuck Waid, he made an abrupt turn to the right after crossing the finish line and crashed into a guardrail while traveling at 151 MPH.  He was pronounced dead at the scene.  He was from Cleveland, Ohio.



Ron Tursovsky, e-mail communication to site administrator, June 13, 2012

Tracy Carter, e-mail communication to site administrator, June 11, 2012

http://www.wkyc.com/news/article/247907/45/Thompson-Track-safety-discussed-in-wake-of-fatal-crash   (accessed 6/17/12)

Linda Moore, e-mail communication to site administrator, July 3, 2012


http://www.dragzine.com/news/56-year-old-racer-killed-another-injured-in-ohio-racing-accident/  (accessed 6/17/12)

http://www.renegaderacingassociation.com/ (accessed 6/17/12)





Allen Mouton

Born:  December 17, 1965

Died: September 12, 2014

Buried:  Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery, Killeen, Texas

Age:  48

Full Name:  Allen Craig Mouton


Drag Strip:  Little River Dragway, Holland, Texas

Event:   Test and Tune

Accident Date:  September 12, 2014

Car: Ford Mustang GT500

Biographical: He was making a single pass, traveling at an estimated 120 MPH when his car veered into the guardrail at about the 1,000-foot mark. The impact split the car in two with the front part of the car slamming into a tree and the rear part staying on the race track. He was a resident native of Killeen, Texas, and was a sergeant in the U. S. Army.


"Texas Racer Perishes in Horrifying Crash at Little River Dragway," Dragzine.com

"Man Dead After Drag Strip Crash," KWTX.com, Sep. 16, 2014

"Racer Killed at Local Dragway," Temple Daily Telegram, Sep. 12, 2014


"Texas Racer Perishes in Horrifying Crash at Little River Dragway," Dragzine.com

"Allen Mouton Killed in Little River Academy Racetrack Accident," Texas News Blog, Sep. 13, 2014

Mark Niver

Born:  January 13, 1950

Died:  July 11, 2010

Buried: cremated

Age:  60

Full Name:  Mark Allen Niver


Drag Strip:  Pacific Raceways, Kent, Washington

Event:  NHRA Northwest Nationals

Accident Date:  July 11, 2010

Car:  T/AD

Biographical:  He won the semi-final eliminations and deployed his parachute but the chute snapped and he sped past the shutdown area into the sandtrap at the end of the track.  After he slammed into the catch netting at the end of the sandtrap, it buckled the chassis back into the driver compartment.  He had been clocked at 271 MPH.  He died at the scene.  He was from Phoenix, Arizona, and was survived by his wife, Tanis, and two married daughters, Cory and Samantha.  He was a 30-year veteran drag racer and had two national event victories in Top Alcohol Dragster.



"Drag racer Mark Niver dies in crash at Pacific Raceways," Covington Reporter, July 12, 2010

Tracy Carter, e-mail communication to site administrator, July 12, 2010

"Drag racer killed during NHRA eliminations at Pacific Raceways," Seattle Post Intelligencer, July 13, 2010

"Obituary," Arizona Republic, July 18, 2010

http://sports.espn.go.com/rpm/racing/nhra/news/story?id=5372090  (accessed 7/20/10)


http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/07/12/sportsline/main6670730.shtml (accessed 7/20/10)



Mark Niver, on left, on his fatal final run.

Craig Owen

Born:  October 20, 1977

Died:  July 30, 2016

Buried:  Robinson Memorial Gardens, Easley, South Carolina

Age:  38

Full Name:  Anthony Craig Owen


Drag Strip:  Ware Shoals Dragway, South Carolina


Accident Date:  July 30, 2016

Car:   Mazda RX7

Biographical: When he lost control of his car, it left the track, flipped over, and landed on vehicles parked along the side of the track. A man and his young son were also injured. He was survived by his wife, Chanda, and son. He was a maintenance supervisor for the South Carolina Department of Transportation and lived in Easley.



"Driver killed and spectator seriously injured in crash at SC dragway," WNCN.com, July 30, 2016

"Death at obscure drag strip reminds of racing's dangers," Sporting News, July 31, 2016


Chad Padgett

Born: September 25, 1974

Died:  September 26, 2015


Age: 41

Full Name:  Chad Dean Padgett


Drag Strip: Orlando Speed World Dragway, Florida


Accident Date: September 26, 2015


Biographical:  He was going about 140 MPH when he lost control of his race car, bounced off one wall, and flipped over onto the roof. He was taken to Florida Hospital East where he was pronounced dead. He lived in Orlando and was survived by his wife, Sammi.


Wayne Maxwell, e-mail communication to site administration, Dec. 19, 2015

"Beloved racer identified by Orlando Speed World in fatal dragster crash," Orlando Sentinel, Sep. 28, 2015


Neal Parker

Born:  December 14, 1951

Died:  June 11, 2010

Buried:  Greenwood Memorial Park, Millville, New Jersey

Age:  58

Full Name:  Neal V. Parker


Drag Strip:  Old Bridge Raceway Park, Englishtown, New Jersey

Event:  NHRA SuperNationals

Accident Date:  June 11, 2010

Car:  TA/FC 2005 Chevrolet Monte Carlo "Excavator"

Biographical:  After being clocked at 249 MPH on a qualifying pass he sped through the shutdown area.  There are conflicting reports on whether he deployed his chute or not, but early indications are that the chute may have malfunctioned and not deployed.  An investigation may be able to determine that.  He sped into the sand trap and through the safety net at the end of the race track.  He was pronounced dead at the scene.  He was from Millville, New Jersey, and was survived by his wife, Betsy Jo.



http://news.puggal.com/raceway-park-drag-strip-crash-41678/ (accessed 6/14/10)

http://www.insideline.com/car-news/drag-racer-killed-in-new-jersey-accident.html  (accessed 6/14/10)

"NHRA driver Neal Parker, 58, dies when his dragster crashesduring qualifying in New Jersey," Seattle Times, June 11, 2010

"Officials investigating NHRA crash that killed racing driver in Old Bridge," myCentralJersey.com, June 11, 2010

Tracy Carter, e-mail communication to site administrator, June 21, 2010

Social Security Death Index

Find a Grave website 


"Millville driver killed in Old Bridge Raceway crash is second fatality in three years at track," NJ.com

"Neal Parker dies in devastating crash during NHRA SuperNationals qualifying round," US Headlines Examiner, June 11, 2010

http://www.ihra.com/article/6314.html   (accessed 6/19/10)

http://www.nitrojam.com/article/3273.html   (accessed 6/19/10)



Scott Phillips

Born:  July 23, 1961

Died:  June 20, 2010

Buried:  Union Lawn Cemetery, Navarre, Ohio

Age:  48

Full Name:  Scott Adam Phillips

Nickname:  "Snake"

Drag Strip:  Dragway 42, West Salem, Ohio

Event:  test and tune

Accident Date:  June 20, 2010

Car:  motorcycle

Biographical:  He lost control of his motorcycle traveling about 100 MPH and crashed into a guard rail.  He was transported to Lodi Community Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.  He was from Perry Township, Ohio, and was survived by his mother, step-father, sisters, and partner, Rachel Boley-Hinkle.


http://www.dragway42.com/newsarchive/newsarchive2010-19.html  (accessed 6/30/10)

K. D. Massey, e-mail communication to site administrator, June 29, 2010

"Perry man dies in motorcycle crash at Dragway 42," CantonRep.com, June 21, 2010

"Obituary," CantonRep.com, June 30, 2010

Social Security Death Index


http://www.dragway42.com/newsarchive/newsarchive2010-19.html  (accessed 6/30/10)


James Rambo


Died:  March 28, 2018


Age:  75

Full Name: James Kenneth Rambo


Drag Strip:  Sonoma Raceway, California

Event:  Wednesday Night Drags

Accident Date:  March 28, 2018

Car:  1976 Ford Pinto

Biographical:  He had crossed the finish line during time trials in the evening, but his car pulled to the left and hit the guardrail at over 100 MPH. It was his second run of the event. He was the only car on the track during the crash. Rambo, from Napa, had built the race car with his son.


"Napa man who died in drag racing crash at Sonoma Raceway identified," Mercury News, Mar. 29, 2018

Dave Sorenson, e-mail communication to site administrator, Mar. 29, 2018


Derek Sanchez

Born:  March 6, 1966

Died:  April 11, 2013

Buried: Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Age:  47

Full Name: Derek Frank Sanchez


Drag Strip: Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Nevada

Event:  NHRA Las Vegas Summitracing.com Nationals

Accident Date:  April 6, 2013

Car:  1933 Ford Roadster S/G

Biographical: He died as the result of injuries sustained in his accident, succumbing five days later while in a coma.  He was at about the 1,000 foot mark when the car suddenly made a hard left and crashed into the wall. He resided in Yuma, Arizona, and was survived by his parents and sister and racing partner, Jeffrey Nolte.  He was originally from Albuquerque.  He was studying at the University of Arizona to try to get his master's degree in library science.  He was employed by the Yuma County Library District.


Drag Racing Online Magazine, Agent 1320, Apr. 11, 2013

Obituary, Albuquerque Journal, April 17, 2013

"Yuma driver remembered for love of racing, books," Yuma Sun, Apr. 13, 2013


"Obituary," French.mem.com



Nabeel Shah

Born:  March 24, 1993

Died:  June 29, 2014

Buried: Roodal Cemetery, San Fernando, Trinidad

Age:  21

Full Name:


Drag Strip: Camden Airfield Raceway, Couva, Trinidad

Event:  unsanctioned event associated with car show

Accident Date:  June 29, 2014

Car:  motorcycle

Biographical:  He lost control of his motorcycle near the finish line of this airfield drag strip shortly after midnight, crashing into a concrete barrier. He was thrown some distance into the air and was killed on impact. He resided in Freeport in Trinidad and Tobago. He was not wearing proper safety clothing as safety standards were not being enforced at this unsanctioned event. He and other racers had been providing entertainment for attendees at the car show. Some news reports mistakenly stated that his given name was Nadir.


"21 year old killed in drag race," Trinidad Express.com, June 29, 2014

"Biker, 21, dies in drag race," Trinidad and Tobago Newsday, June 30, 2014


Nabeel Shah condolence page, Facebook



Aaron Slemker

Born:  March 18, 1993

Died: July 22, 2014

Buried: Pleasant Hill Cemetery, Brookville, Ohio

Age: 21

Full Name: Aaron Frank Patrick Slemker


Drag Strip: Maryland International Raceway, Budds Creek, Maryland

Event:  drag race instruction class

Accident Date: July 22, 2014

Car:  2012 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R

Biographical: He was participating in an accredited motorcycle drag race training school class on the drag strip. Upon returning to the staging area on an access road behind the raceway's drag strip, he lost control of his motorcycle and struck a cement barrier. He resided in Clayton, Ohio.


"Aaron Slemker killed in Budds Creek drag strip crash," Chesapeake Today, July 22, 2014

Find a Grave entry

"Motorcyclist killed in crash was new to sport," SoMdNews.com


Chris Stewart


Died:  January 21, 2017


Age:  48

Full Name: 


Drag Strip:  South Coast Raceway, Portland, Victoria, Australia

Event:  ANDRA South Coast 660


Accident Date:  January 21, 2017

Car:  Hemi-engined Camaro

Biographical: He  died when his drag car crashed into a wall during the opening day of the 2-day Summit Sportsman Series race. About 1,000 people witnessed the accident during the morning time trials. He was entered in the supercharged outlaws category. The competition was suspended for the rest of the weekend race.


"Competitor killed at ANDRA meeting," speedcafe.com, Jan. 21, 2017.

"Competitor dies in Portland raceway crash," Illawarra Merc;ury, Jan. 22, 2017.


Waldy Vazquez


Died:  April 12, 2014


Age:  42

Full Name: Waldemar Vazquez


Drag Strip: Lakeland Motor Speedway, Florida


Accident Date:  April 5, 2014

Car:  1981 Toyota

Biographical: He had been timed at over 140 MPH, but had slowed to about 90 MPH when his car left the race track, hit a mound of dirt, and went airborne. His car hit the top of some trees about twenty feet high before landing in the woods. He was transported to Lakeland Regional Medical Center where he succumbed about a week later from head and neck injuries suffered in the accident. He lived in Tampa.


"Drag racer dies from crash-related injuries," Washington Times, Apr. 14, 2014.

"Crash at Lakeland Motor Speedway injures drag racer," The Ledger, Apr. 8, 2014.


Jerry Vanderpool

Born:  November 28, 1960

Died:  March 23, 2012

Buried: Moore Cemetery, Oklahoma

Age:  51

Full Name:  Jerry D. Vanderpool


Drag Strip:  Thunder Valley Raceway Park, Noble, Oklahoma


Accident Date:  March 23, 2012

Car:  1961 Ford Falcon

Biographical:  Near midnight he was racing against his brother at the drag strip and traveling at 100 MPH when his car drifted to the left.  He overcorrected and the car flipped five times.  He was from Moore, Oklahoma.



"Obituary," The Oklahoman, Mar. 27, 2012

Norman Hechtkoff, e-mail communication to site administrator, Mar. 27, 2012

"Highway patrol releases report on raceway death, Norman Transcript, Mar. 29, 2012


"Obituary," The Oklahoman, Mar. 27, 2012




Mike Walker

Born:  March 7, 1955

Died:  April 24, 2010


Age:  55

Full Name:  James Michael Walker


Drag Strip:  South Georgia Motorsports Park, Cecil, Georgia

Event:  American Drag Racing League Hardee's Georgia Drags VI

Accident Date:  April 24, 2010

Car:  Pro Mod

Biographical:  He died when a nitrous oxide bottle he was warming up in preparation for racing exploded and hit him in the chest.  He was a co-owner of Blake Housley's Pro Nitrous team and a native of Missouri. Paramedics tried to revive him, but he was dead when he arrived at Memorial Hospital in Adel. He was survived by his wife, Melanie.


"Man dies after accident at motorsports park," WALB News, April 25, 2010

"Freak accident causes death at race track," Valdosta Daily Times, Apr. 27, 2010

Social Security Death Index (James M. Walker, born Mar. 7, 1955, died Apr. 24, 2010, SS# issued in Missouri)

"Obituary," Eastern Jackson County Examiner, Apr. 28, 2010


"Man dies after accident at motorsports park," WALB News, April 25, 2010

http://www.promodifieds.us/forums/showthread.php?p=94976  (accessed 12/16/10)

Tubby Walls

Born: November 25, 1988

Died: May 10, 2013

Buried: Riverside Cemetery, Cullman County, Alabama

Age: 24

Full Name: Jonathan Walls

Nickname: "Tubby"

Drag Strip:  Baileyton Dragstrip, Alabama


Accident Date:  May 10, 2013


Biographical: The car appeared to have handling issues after leaving the line on its first-ever pass on this track.  He resided in Holly Pond, Alabama, and was survived by his parents and fiance.


DragCoverage.com, May 11, 2013

"Obituary," Decatur Daily, May 13, 2013

"Obituary," Cullman Times, May 13, 2013

Find a Grave website


DragCoverage.com Speed Forums


Windle Webster

Born:   August 15, 1971 

Died:  August 11, 2017

Buried:   Hermitage Memorial Gardens, Old Hickory, Tennessee

Age:  45

Full Name: Windle A. Webster, Jr.


Drag Strip:  Middle Tennessee Dragway, Buffalo Valley, Tennessee


Accident Date:   August 11, 2017


Biographical:   After crossing the finish line, his car failed to stop. The car veered off the left side of the track and slammed into a tree, killing him on impact. He was from Lebanon, Tennessee, and was survived by his wife, Chasity, and a son and daughter.



"Drag race driver killed at Middle Tennessee Dragway," WKRN.com, Aug. 12, 2017

"Local drag racer dies in crash," Nashville Tennessean, August 20, 2017


Paul Whisenhunt

Born:  December 27, 1969

Died: June 13, 2011

Buried: Drummond Cemetery, Abilene, Texas

Age:  41

Full Name: John Paul Whisenhunt


Drag Strip:  Abilene Dragstrip, Abilene, Texas


Accident Date:  June 12, 2011


Biographical: It was suspected that a medical condition may have caused him to lose consciousness and control of his car during a time trial run in the morning. He was from Abilene and was survived by his wife, Jennifer, and three children.  He was a body shop manager at a car dealership.


"Local man dies after wreck at dragstrip," Abilene Reporter News, June 13, 2013

"Driver dies following dragstrip accident," Big Country Homepage.com, June 13, 2011


Find a Grave website


Chad Wilcox

Born:  September 9, 1985

Died:  July 4, 2010

Buried:  South Brookfield Memorial Park Cemetery, Brookfield, New York

Age:  24

Full Name:  Chad Michael Wilcox


Drag Strip:  ESTA Safety Park Dragstrip, Cicero, New York


Accident Date:  July 4, 2010

Car:  modified snowmobile

Biographical:  He was traveling at about 160 MPH during time trials on a modified snowmobile owned by the family of the young lady he was planning to marry.  The sled hit a guard rail and he was thrown off, landing about 300 feet from the vehicle.  He was pronounced dead at the scene.  He and Joanna Dote had been dating for eight years and were planning to marry in June 2111.  He was from West Edmeston, New York, the son of James and Lynette Wilcox.


"Brookfield man killed while racing along Cicero track," Utica Observer-Dispatch, July 5, 2010

Jim "Grumpy" Bellnier, e-mail communication to site administrator, July 11, 2010

"Drag strip accident claims life of West Edmeston man," Madison County Courier, July 5, 2010

"Madison County man dies in drag strip accident," WSYR.com, July 4, 2010

Social Security Death Index

Find a Grave website


Blake Williams


Died:  November 17, 2016


Age:  23

Full name:  Blake Hardin Williams


Drag Strip:  Yello Belly Drag Strip, Grand Prairie, Texas


Accident Date:  November 17, 2016

Car:  1980s Ford Thunderbird

Biographical:  Williams was racing his car against a Mustang, driven by Aki Gatson, at about 11:00 P.M. After crossing the finish line, the Mustang slid and veered over into Williams' lane, hitting the T-Bird. In the resulting collision, both vehicles vaulted over the cement barrier wall and hit a tree. Williams was thrown from the car and killed instantly. He lived in Burleson and his fatal accident was seen by his wife and two children.


"Driver dies in violent crash at Yello Belly Drag Strip," Fox4News.com

"Explosive crash at north Texas drag strip leaves 1 dead," CBSDFW

"Driver ejected, killed in crash at drag racing strip in Grand Prairie," Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Nov. 18, 2016


"Remembering Blake"

Barry Wright

Born:  March 3, 1971

Died:  November 6, 2011

Buried:  Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston, South Carolina

Age:  40

Full Name: Barry Lynn Wright, Jr.


Drag Strip:  Dorchester Dragway, near Ridgeville, South Carolina


Accident Date:  November 6, 2011

Car: pickup truck

Biographical:  He was racing in the right lane against a Mustang driven by Tara Lee Griffin, a Summerville woman.  When her car started to spin, it clipped the pickup truck, causing both vehicles to hit the guardrail.  After hitting the guardrail, the truck flipped over the retaining wall and hit a light pole.  Wright was pinned inside and died from positional asphyxia.  Wright was from North Charleston, South Carolina, and was survived by his mother, Geneva, and son, Fredrick "Chase" Wright.


"Driver killed in Dorchester Co. drag race accident identified," WCSC Live 5 News, Nov. 7, 2011.

"Drag Way death in Sunday race," Summerville Patch, Nov. 7, 2011

“Obituary,” Charleston Post and Courier, Nov. 10, 2011



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