A mortifying aerial crash involving driver Austin Dillon left the NASCAR community taking stock and counting blessings Sunday night.
Dillon's No. 3 car became airborne and flipped into the catchfence at Turn 1 as racers jockeyed for position in the final laps of the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway.
The wreck left five fans in need of non-life-threatening medical treatment. Miraculously, Dillon walked away from the accident with only bruises.
After the accident, Dillon spoke to the press about how reducing drivers' speed could help keep cars on the ground and cut down on wrecks such as his.
"It's not really acceptable, I don't think," he told reporters. "We've got to figure out something. Our speeds are too high, I think. I think everybody could get good racing at lower speeds."
Dillon's wreck effectively tore down the catchfence in Turn 1.
His engine also sat in the infield—completely detached from the car—after the wreck.
Other drivers, including winner Dale Earnhardt Jr., were agape at the accident and wished Dillon well in the aftermath.
Fellow racer Ryan Newman was the most vocal among drivers to comment on Dillon's wreck. He said it was part of the business and exactly what NASCAR wants in a race.
"NASCAR got what they wanted. That's the end of it," Newman told USA Today. "Cars getting airborne, unsafe drivers, same old stuff. They just don't listen. ... They just don't pay attention to safety. Simple as that."
Dillon waved to the crowd after being helped from the vehicle by responders. He said they took care of him.
"They got to me pretty quick," Dillon said of the responders. "I just wanted to get out of there and let the fans know I was OK."