During the second round of eliminations at the 15th Annual NMCA World Street Finals on Aug. 28, 2016 at Summit Motorsports Park in Ohio, Wiseco Street Outlaw driver Georgina Buckley lost control of her ’85 Mustang on a solo pass and went into the retaining wall with great force.
Flames erupted on impact, and fans watched in horror as the wing from her car flew in one direction and the hatch flew in another direction.
While the longtime driver was conscious, she doesn’t remember all of the details leading up to her ambulance ride to Fisher-Titus Medical Center in Norwalk or being transferred to the University of Toledo Trauma Center, where she eventually learned she had six broken ribs, not two as originally thought, as well as a cracked sternum, a concussion and a gash in her tongue which required stitches.
“I’ve watched the video a couple times, and it scares me to death,” said Buckley, who was released from the trauma center on Aug. 30 and drove home to Lake Villa, Illinois with her husband and crew chief, Dave Buckley. “It’s like I’m watching someone else’s wreck, and maybe that means I’m still in shock over it.”
Buckley — who had been competing in 275 events across the country in addition to NMCA Wiseco Street Outlaw — believes that the throttle stuck in the car which features a chassis by Tucci Speed Shop and a nitrous-enhanced big-block Chevy by Jimmy Lopez. She also believes that it’s now beyond repair, as the engine was pushed back several inches and the firewall is compromised, but her husband has already purchased another ’85 Mustang as a replacement.
“I’m glad the safety equipment did its job, but it’s been an emotional roller coaster and I’m heartbroken because we’ve had that car for 20 years,” said Buckley, who was touched that Dina Parise, Jacky McCarty and other NMCA racers and crew members helped load her car into the trailer. “I wish this had never happened.”