Watching NASCAR driver Mark Martin’s race car careen into the pit wall at the Michigan Motor Speedway Sunday, you would never think the longtime driver from Batesville, Ark., would make it out alive, much less with no injuries.
But that’s exactly what happened to the driver during Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Pure Michigan 400. Martin, driving No. 55 Toyota, was leading the race until lap 66 when fellow driver Bobby Labonte spun in front of the car driven by Juan Pablo Montoya and caused Martin to slow down, according to Nascar.com.
That collision forced Martin, 53, to slow down and caused a chain reaction when driver Kasey Kahne slammed into the back of Martin’s car and sent him flying down pit-road and straight into a pit-road wall.
Martin survived only because the direct impact missed his driver’s side door.
“That was a pretty freak angle,” he said, according to FoxSports.com. “I’m not sure what you could do. It could have been really bad if I would have got in that hole a little deeper where it caught me in the door instead of the crush area.”
Martin didn’t just survive the crash, he climbed out of his impaled car and waved to the crowd in the grandstands. He was later treated and released from the infield care center.
Driver Greg Biffle went on to win the race.