A spectator died after a crash during a race at Williams Grove Speedway in Monroe Township Friday night, the Cumberland County Coroner said in a news release.
Richard E. Speck Jr., 67, of Mechanicsburg, was watching a race from the infield along the front stretch when the crash occurred around 9:25 p.m., Coroner Charles Hall said in the news release.
As two sprint cars in the race exited turn 4 at the track, they collided, causing one to lose control and strike the inside wall. The sprint car went airborne over top of the infield fence and struck Speck, who was sitting in the back of his pickup truck parked along the infield fence, Hall said in a news release.
Speck was pronounced dead at the scene of multiple traumatic injuries.
Due to the severity of the accident, we have been forced to cancel the remainder of tonight’s racing program. Freddie Rahmer has been declared the winner of tonight’s event.— Williams Grove (@WilliamsGrove) August 3, 2019
According to Pennlive, Speck worked as a push truck driver at the track. Push trucks are positioned around the track during racing and are used to assist a car idled after it spins out or is involved in a crash.
You have free articles remaining.
Williams Grove Speedway posted a statement on Facebook Sunday about Speck.
"Drivers may receive fame, but every person who comes on a Friday night makes up the genetics of our race track," the post read. "We will forever have a void after losing one of our own Friday night. Richard Speck Jr. gave of himself and time on Friday nights to help the program run smoothly. We will be forever grateful to him and his family."
Speck taught fifth-grade math in the Northern York County School District for 35 years and was a Messiah College grad, Pennlive reported. He also served as a girls' basketball coach at Northern in the early 2000s.
The remainder of Friday’s racing program was canceled for the evening.
The incident is under investigation by state police, the coroner’s office and track officials.
The Williams Grove Speedway website listed the feature on Friday night as the Billy Kimmel Memorial for the Lawrence Chevrolet 410 sprint cars, part of the 2019 Yellow Breeches 500 series. Also on the program was the HJ Towing & Recovery 358 sprints competing in a Summer Series race.
The annual Billy Kimmel Memorial for 410 sprint cars is run in honor of Billy Kimmel of Mechanicsburg. Kimmel died in a sprint car racing crash at Williams Grove in 2007. He was 27 years old.