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NASCAR Charger Gains Buzzard

by Ray Alexander on

During the running of Big Bend Open Road Race on April 25th,  Larry Robinson encountered a buzzard while driving his Dodge Charger NASCAR Cup car, previously driven by Casey Mears. The car does not have a speedometer, but Larry, who has owned the car for several years, estimated his speed at 175 mph at the time of the meeting. His tires are NASCAR Cup types with the safety tube (each tire has two air chambers).

buzzard in NASCAR Dodge Charger racing car

Larry wrote, “I had just hit a piece of debris, possibly a piece of exhaust pipe, and it shook the car. After a time at a reduced speed, I decided the car was sound and was coming back to speed. Suddenly, there was a buzzard coming straight down the highway; it struck low on the windshield. The top front bar of the roll cage prevented the bird from entering the car. After that the right side view was obscured. I probably drove an extra six miles as I corrected my driving line.”

entry into roof

To avoid this type of accidents, before the first and second legs, debris is picked up, and anything a buzzard sees as food is moved beyond a fence line, even if it takes two people.

This event occurred shortly after the start of the return leg; the carcass was lying in the southbound lane and easy to identify as something abnormal. Road racers can use the entire paved area since the route is closed to normal traffic. Had the bird entered the car, the end result could have been much worse.


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