Curb on Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course causes 2 major crashes in NASCAR race

Rob Peeters
Indianapolis Star

INDIANAPOLIS -- The end of the inaugural NASCAR Cup Series race on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course featured a major incident when part of the curb in the turns 5-6 chicane came up and destroyed multiple race cars.

A second incident was caused by the removal of the curb.

That section of track, which shortcuts the previous interior loop design, was created for the first IndyCar Grand Prix in 2014 and was done to increase passing at the end of Hulman Boulevard into turn 7. Prior to this weekend, the chicane had sent a few cars airborne, but never caused the level of destruction as it did Sunday.

At the end of the Xfinity Series race Sunday, NASCAR removed one of the curbs in that section of the track after several cars became airborne during the doubleheader races. The curbs that remained did not appear to be touched overnight. 

Updates:Tracking the NASCAR race on the Indianapolis road course

During the stage breaks, marshals were seen taking sledgehammers to the curb in an attempt to keep it bolted to the ground. The makeshift repair lasted until the 77th lap of the 82 lap race.

During a late race restart, a piece of debris was seen flying right before Martin Truex Jr. was spun into the tire barriers. On the very next lap, the first few cars went across the curb without issue until William Byron’s car hit it. Byron’s car spun, followed by Kyle Busch’s car. Joey Logano’s front splitter appeared to dig underneath the curb and launch his car into the tire barriers. Multiple other cars like Daniel Suarez, Christopher Bell, and Ryan Preece also destroyed their cars after hitting the curb.

NASCAR and IMS quickly removed the curb at turn 6 with no replacement during the ensuing red flag period.

Without that curb, a curb behind it was exposed and caused another incident on the re-start. Tyler Reddick, Austin Dillon, Michael McDowell, Cole Custer and Martin Truex