NASCAR crash investigators will examine the major wrecks to determine if any change or improvements to the sport's safety plan should be implemented. It was the third time in Talladega track history the retaining fence played a role in a major crash here. In 1987, Bobby Allison hit the fence coming out of the tri-oval near the start-finish line in an incident that led to the institution of restrictor plates for superspeedway cars. And in 1993, Neil Bonnett hit the fence coming through the tri-oval.
Al Muskewitz covers golf and Jacksonville State University sports teams for The Anniston Star. For reprints, email email@example.com, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA."I don't want to wreck anyone, but to say a no-contact sport is fun, I don't buy that. These guys want to see contact just as much as I want to give it and take it."
"The retaining fence did its job," NASCAR spokesman Kerry Tharp said. "Safety is our No. 1 priority, and always will be. We have certainly made strides in that area, but the job is never done. We've got a research and development center and they won it every day." The retaining fence that caught Edwards' car kept the vehicle from careening into the seating area. Another portion of the fence had to be repaired during a caution period following a 14-car wreck early in the race.