BIG ONE TAKES OUT NEMECHEK TALLADEGA, Ala. (May 1, 2005) -- When the "Big One" struck at Talladega Superspeedway Sunday, Joe Nemechek's U.S. Army Chevrolet was one of 25 cars collected in the multicar accident that forced NASCAR officials ...
BIG ONE TAKES OUT NEMECHEK
TALLADEGA, Ala. (May 1, 2005) -- When the "Big One" struck at Talladega Superspeedway Sunday, Joe Nemechek's U.S. Army Chevrolet was one of 25 cars collected in the multicar accident that forced NASCAR officials to red-flag the Nextel Cup race for more than 40 minutes to clean up the mess.
When the incident occurred on Lap 132 of 188, Nemechek was running in the top 20 and in the lead draft.
"It's really unfortunate what happened because we were poised to bust to the front," said Nemechek, who finished 31st with a crippled racecar. "I didn't see anything -- it was just all smoke. Something happened right up front and it was big. I just got pinned against the wall."
Nemechek was brought to the infield medical center where he was evaluated and released with no injuries. However, his black and gold car suffered a different fate.
"The car didn't hit hard, but we had some major suspension damage along with a broken gear in the steering," explained Nemechek. "It was quite a feat to get back on the track. Hats off to all of the Army crew."
Once NASCAR lifted the red flag, the Army of One crew went to work to repair the damage and Nemechek returned to action on Lap 158.
"Anytime you come here you know this can happen," said Nemechek. "You just hope that you're lucky enough to avoid the big one."
The 25-car melee also claimed Nemechek's MB2 Motorsports teammates Scott Riggs and Boris Said. Both Riggs and Said were also having strong runs when the accident happened.
"Today wasn't our day, but everyone knows that we have an outstanding superspeedway program," offered Nemechek. "We can't wait for the July event in Daytona."
The next race for the U.S. Army Team will be Saturday night in Darlington, S.C.