The fire that ended my race at COTA last month and sent me to the intensive care unit of the Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, also destroyed our on-board cameras. We were convinced that no video of the event existed, but last week's article drew over 50,000 readers and three videos surfaced. All three videos are very short and are presented uncut.
comes from the on-board camera of a fellow competitor, Paul Kruse. I am briefly seen on the right side of the picture, falling ungracefully out of our team's Porsche 944 in a desperate effort to escape the blaze. My right arm is on fire, as can be seen in the sliding photo banner at the top of the page. The interior of the Porsche is a mass of flames as well, and my leg is still burning as I tumble backwards out of the car.
I would like to publicly thank Paul and all of my other fellow drivers for looking out for my safety during this incident. If any of them had failed to pay attention and steer clear of my car, the results could have been even more disastrous. The quality of drivers in this series is excellent. If you raced past my burning car, thank you for your attentiveness and good driving.
The second video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNmkvv4Y-fE&feature=youtu.be
is courtesy of racing photographer Sergio Perfetti and begins perhaps fifteen seconds after I exited the car. The Porsche is already a mass of flames, and the yellow-uniformed EMT's on the far side of the car are attending me with great care that I truly appreciated.
The third video, also courtesy of Sergio Perfetti, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtmffZV073s&feature=youtu.be shows the EMTs helping me to my feet and into the ambulance while the fire continues to rage. Other units arrive on the scene but the fire gets completely out of control, forcing one of the emergency trucks to retreat. Even the videographer backs up when the flames soar twenty feet high!
Thankfully, by this time I was in the ambulance and safe from any further burns. I am grateful to series officials, track corner workers, and the Circuit of the Americas emergency team for their speed, professionalism and compassion.
WRL Series officials would like to help Stephen through this difficult time, and have started this Relief Fund Project for Stephen and his family: https://www.gofundme.com/9tvup97k
Stephen Cox is a racer and co-host of TV coverage of Mecum Auctions (NBCSN), sponsored by: http://www.boschett-timepieces.com/ http://www.mcgunegillengines.com/