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From the Marbles

Grand Am car clears fence in crash at Road America

Nick Bromberg
From The Marbles

Gunter Schaldach's car launched over the fence in Turn 1 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisc., during Saturday's Grand-Am race.

(Schaldach can be seen clearing the fence at 1:51 of the above video.)

Schaldach lost the brakes as he entered the turn and collected Joe Foster from behind before sliding off course. Foster was carrying so much speed that he slid through the gravel trap and smashed into the tire barrier. Foster was airlifted to an area hospital where he was evalutated and released.

In most cases, the gravel trap slows a car down and the tire barrier softens the impact to the wall. Given the angle and speed that Schaldach hit, the barrier served as a launching pad, sending his car over the fence and down the hill on the other side.

Schaldach, who estimated his speed at about 160 m.p.h., walked away from the incident.

This wreck came just two weeks after two incredible crashes in the world's other major sports car series at the 24 Hours at Le Mans. At Le Mans, Allen McNish flipped over a wall and Mike Rockenfeller hit head-on into an Armco barrier.

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