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Race car kills 2 at California track

Mar 17, 2013, 3:35 PM EDT

Marysville AP

A 68-year-old man and a 14-year-old boy were killed last night at California’s Marysville Raceway Park, when a 17-year-old sprint car driver careened into pit row and hit the pair.

According to the Associated Press, Yuba County Sheriff’s Capt. Ron Johnson said that the man was pronounced dead at the track and the boy was declared dead at a local hospital. The Appeal-Democrat of Marysville, California reports that the victims’ names have not been released and that investigators believe they could have been part of a pit crew.

Per an eyewitness account from track announcer Steven Blakesley, driver Chase Johnson was in the middle of doing warmup laps when his car suddenly became unable to make a turn and ran through a gap between the track and pit row. The car then hit an empty golf cart before going out of the crowd’s view.

“There must have been a mechanical problem,” Blakesley told the AP. “The car didn’t slow down.”

Johnson was not injured in the incident, which canceled the rest of the night’s events at Marysville Raceway Park. The hot laps were taking place prior to a race for the California Sprint Car Civil War Series.

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