Stewart causes large wreck in sprint car race (Update)UPDATE Alysha Ruggles, the 19-year-old who suffered a compression fracture in her back during a sprint-car race Tuesday in a race with Tony Stewart, is home from the hospital.
Stewart was among the cars that were three-wide and had the initial contact that triggered the multicar accident during the feature event at Canandaigua (N.Y.) Motorsports Park. Ruggles, whose mother took her to the hospital after she began complaining of back pain following the accident, suffered a compression fracture in her back, according to the (Rochester) Democrat and Chronicle.
"Right now, she has to take it one day at a time," Wendy Ruggles told the newspaper. "We had a big scare; she was close to being paralyzed."
The track’s Facebook page posted that Ruggles was released from the hospital Thursday.
"To quote our Alysha Ruggles - she said ‘Everyone needs to stop blaming Tony, it was a racing accident,'" the track said on its Facebook post.
Ruggles comes from a racing family. When the race eventually resumed Tuesday night, her father was still in contention and he finished fifth in the event, which featured winged sprint cars with 360 cubic-inch engines on the half-mile dirt track. Sporting News
07/18/13 The most well-known driver in the winged-sprint car race Tuesday at Canandaigua Motorsports Park almost became the show-stopper. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Tony Stewart was right at the center of a crash that involved 15 cars on lap 7 of the 25-lap feature race on the half-mile oval dirt track. Stewart, seen later chatting with crew members of other teams, said in an interview over the track's public address system that the accident was his fault.
Alysha Ruggles, a 19-year old driver from Canandaigua, was taken to Thompson Hospital in her hometown because of pain in her lower back caused by the accident. Witnesses said that Ruggles' car hit the wheel of another, went into the air 20 to 30 feet and came to a stop 50 to 60 feet later.
Crew members for the car driven by Paul Kinney of Canastota said that they believed Kinney was taken to Rochester General Hospital. Kinney had pain in his back and legs but his exact injuries were unknown.
"I have never seen anything this bad in a sprint car race, I don't think, or this many cars being taken out in one wreck," said sprint car driver Mike Stelter of Webster. "At least Tony Stewart manned up and said he caused the wreck. "He tried to put the car where it didn't belong. He said it was his fault for trying to force the issue, I guess is a good way to say it." Democrat and Chronicle
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