Horrific Colorado Crash Leads to Questions About Road Rallies

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Two Illinois men are dead after a high-speed crash near Norwood, Colorado.

The men appear to have been participants in the Crown Rally.

The car they were in is almost unrecognizable — it appears it might be a Porsche 911 Turbo S — because they went off at 140 mph or higher.

After calling it “one of the most horrific traffic accidents responding deputies have ever seen,” San Miguel County Sheriff Bill Masters added this: “I am terribly sorry these two men were killed in what was a preventible [sic] accident. And I don’t appreciate what amounts to reckless and intentional disregard for the people of our county. They could have killed an innocent motorist. Crown Rally needs to re-think what they’re doing out on the roads”.

The crash occurred about 15 miles northwest of Norwood, on state highway 141.

Crown Rally put out this statement on Facebook: “We are deeply saddened to learn of the loss of two members of our rally family who passed away yesterday in a single car incident. Larry and Mike have touched so many lives in and outside of the car community, and we will miss them dearly. Our sincere condolences go out to their families and friends.”

I wasn’t able to find the last names for Larry and Mike as I poked around the various Crown Rally pages. We’ll update should we receive that information.

Crown Rally is a non-profit organization that says it was “created to connect car enthusiasts with opportunities to give back to the community.”

This is where I disclose that over a decade ago, I participated in the Fireball Run road rally. So I might not be the best person to chide Crown Rally organizers — though I remember the Fireball officials doing their best to keep our speeds on public roads from being too insane. They didn’t always succeed, though I don’t recall ever going that deep into triple-digit territory.

Still, perhaps these road rallies need to re-think their approach. Crown Rally appears to be raising money for a worthy cause or causes, so that’s nice, but it doesn’t change the fact that when a lot of people with a lot of money gather their high-performance rides for these rallies, there are always those who give into temptation and let their ego get the best of their common sense. And that’s assuming Crown Rally organizers worked to keep speeds appropriate. It’s possible they didn’t, though we have no evidence either way.

I don’t think road rallies should be banned. But if they are to continue, and continue using public roads, they must keep the speeds sane. Save the hairy stuff for the track, ladies and gents.

[Image: Screenshot from Crown Rally Web site]

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