Editorial

The HANS Device saved my Fathers life

 by Zak Larimore
February 27, 2001

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At speed


Making the pass


Makes pass clean


Boat flips over

Editors Note:  This letter was sent to us by a reader who saw our articles on safety in racing, and particularly our Series form 2000 on the HANS Device

Hi, my name is Zak Larimore and I m a 20 year old fireman from Springfield, Ohio. My father and I have been racing hydroplanes for the past eleven years and in the summer of '97 (August 1997) my father was involved in a serious accident. In the first turn of the final event of the '97 Molson Thunderfest in Kelowna, British Columbia, he rolled his open cockpit hydro at over 165 mph while moving forward. He stopped in about four feet. See the series of pictures to the right that show my Father making the pass and then the boat flips over.

On top of the sheer inertia, the water rushing in around him forced him forward even harder. His left shoulder harness actually sheered the 1/4 in thick washer which was used to help spread the load to the half inch thick carbonfiber/steel firewall and actually pulled the harness through the wall. He went forward and went under the steering wheel and under the dash and after four minuets under water with no air was extricated from the boat. 

After he was admitted to the hospital in a coma we had a chance to look at the device. The tethers which attached to the helmet itself actually stayed intact and literally pulled the helmet apart but never detached. Now he is alive and well and after building a new boat, continues to race today. 

He only drives in Qualifying and testing now but hey, he is a happy, healthy man and owes it to the HANS device and the people who designed it. 

Sincerely, Zak Larimore/ Springfield, Ohio

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Standing Starts are they right for CART

Visit the Nascartop50

Our ranking out of 750 NASCAR websites since joining on 7/3/00

Convert this page to
another language

e-mail us:
contacts@autoracing1.com

Back to the top

AutoRacing1 is an independent internet online publication and is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by CART Inc., NASCAR, FIA,  FedEx, Winston, or any other series sponsor. This material may not be published, broadcast, or redistributed without permission.
User agreement & disclaimer

Copyright 1999 - 2001, AutoRacing1, Inc., Hamilton, NJ