It hard to make “funny” about a situation like the death of Mark Niver, this past weekend at Seattle, so obviously I won’t. Which is kind of sad. I’m like any other that likes to be sarcastic at times. Having been around drag racing all my life, the dangers involved with racing almost go without saying. Crashing gets glorified at times, which I detest. But we all need to laugh a bit because we know it (danger) exists but want to do everything we can to prevent death or injuries. There’s no laughing in Mudville today.
So: Why be unsafe? I’m probably repeating the same thing that many others have said but why? Why do I have to bring the same point as pontificated by many more knowledgeable than I? Why take unneeded risks? Whatever the “reasons” for why this latest tragedy happened, is not my point. Yes, I know his chutes ripped off after deployment. He hits the netting (take a look at the video) at what looks like a reasonable speed – it wasn’t.
I want all of us to be able to race under the best of conditions. From what I read plus many comments from other drivers, Seattle wasn’t the best of conditions, and I’m not talking weather. Why was the track questionable to so many drivers including the Pro Stockers who refused for a short time to even race? Did this have anything to do with the Niver crash? Don’t know but see; we shouldn’t be speculating. There should be no question as to the safety when considering prep or any other track regards.
We can’t keep losing drivers folks. No more striking out. It not only is killing our drivers, who are some of the best athletes in the world, but it will kill the sport. Yes, I’ve said before that I’m not fond of the NHRA and how it operates but since they are the biggest operator and controller of the sport, we have to work with them and they have to work with the teams – NOW! No more words. We need action. And if we think shortening the track is going to make a difference, do it, but we may be fooling ourselves.
Friends, associates and fellow competitors have died in the past and it can’t be in vain. No more excuses, let’s just get it done and make it safe to go outside again.