BARRE TOWN — Thunder Road officials say the two track officials who were injured after a crash on Labor Day are expected to fully recover.
The owners of the track didn’t respond to a request for comment Tuesday, but a post was made on the track’s Facebook page saying the officials were expected to fully recover. Dean Gallison, a Thunder Road official, and Jonathan Lemay, an official with the American-Canadian Tour, were hit by a car that went over a wall during a qualifying run on Sunday.
“One was discharged from the hospital on Sunday night and is at home awaiting surgery on a leg injury. The other is still at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire and likely will be for several more days. Both have been in good spirits throughout the ordeal. At least one has spoken directly with the drivers involved and expressed their desire to see them back on the track,” the post said.
It’s unclear which official is still in the hospital. The driver who went over the wall and hit the officials is a juvenile and his name has not been released.
Witnesses said three race cars were traveling three-abreast around the track when the car on the outside edge of the track drove up the side of the banked track and flew over a retaining wall, crashing into the race officials. The officials were standing by a retaining wall, near the right hand side of the exit to the pits.
“First of all, we want to thank everyone for their positive thoughts, prayers, vibes, and support over the last two days. Countless people have reached out to the officials, drivers, and fans who were at Sunday’s Labor Day Classic event as well as to us directly. Times like this are proof of how tightly-knit the racing family is, regardless of what driver, track, or series you may consider your ‘favorite,’” track officials said on Facebook.
Barre Town Police Chief William Dodge said his department is investigating the crash because there was a potential for loss of life. The car that hit the officials has been reportedly impounded as part of the investigation.
Dodge said it doesn’t appear the drivers involved were impaired or that there was any criminal intent involved. The investigation is ongoing.
Racing was halted at the track after the crash. Track officials said in another Facebook post the Labor Day event has been rescheduled for Sept. 14 at 5 p.m. The track’s Barre Granite Association Championship has been moved to Sept. 22 at 1:30 p.m.