Ex-NASCAR driver Shane Hmiel was air lifted to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, after a violent single-car accident while qualifying for Saturday's USAC SUMAR Classic at Terre Haute Action Track.
Hmiel lost control of his Silver Crown car between turns three and four, which resulted in his car receiving significant damage to the roll bar as it impacted the outside the retaining wall.
Hmiel was placed into a medically-induced coma to reduce cranial pressure, in order to minimize the swelling that was caused by his head trauma. According to a USAC news release, the 30-year-old North Carolina native is listed in critical condition in the hospital’s intensive care unit.
“We are very concerned about Shane and offer our resources and our support to his family during this time of healing,” said USAC President/CEO Kevin Miller.
Hmiel who was banned for life from NASCAR in 2006 because of repeated substance abuse violations, found a new lease on life when he joined the USAC series and won his first race at Hickory Speedway in March of 2010.
Hmiel competed in 83 races in the then NASCAR Busch series where he picked up 10 top-five, and 23 top-10 finishes with 0 wins.
He also competed in the then Craftsman Truck series while picking up one win, five top-five, and 12 top-10 finishes in 29 starts.
Hmiel's father, Steve, is currently the director of competition for NASCAR's Earnhardt Ganassi Racing.