LONG POND, Pa. – Testing his car on new pavement at Watkins Glen International, Brad Keselowski crashed hard into the tire barrier at the outer edge of a runoff area in Turn 1 at the 2.45-mile road course.
The culprit was an improperly installed brake line. Keselowski entered the corner with no stopping power, was unable to turn his No. 2 Ford and hit the tires at 81 mph, according to the telemetry on the car.
Fortunately, Keselowski was unhurt, and NASCAR’s safety enhancements over the past 15 years certainly had a hand in protecting him. Nevertheless, Keselowski considers road courses the most treacherous venues the series visits because of some of the sharp angles involved.
“In general, I’m not comfortable with tracks that have run offs that lead to very harsh angles,” Keselowski said. “Road courses remain the most dangerous tracks in motorsports for good reason because of that, but we know that going in.
“Some place has to be the safest, and some place has to be the most dangerous. It’s funny because a lot of times we end up talking about Daytona and Talladega and they don’t ever worry me as much as road courses do, I can promise you that.”
Watkins Glen has made significant safety improvements over the past decade, and the recent repaving of the racing surface is the latest project in a long list of capital improvements at the track.