Will Power has described IndyCar's race at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway as a "recipe for disaster" following the huge accident that took Dan Wheldon's life.
Power was one of the 15 drivers involved in the accident, the Australian's car going airborne and hitting the wall at very high speed. He was lucky to escape serious injuries, although he was briefly hospitalized to investigate pain in his lower back.
This year's IZOD IndyCar Series' runner-up has ratcheted up his criticism of the event, telling reporters in Australia that he believes the decision to race at Las Vegas was wrong.
"Racing on this sort of track is too fast and too close," Power told Triple M Radio in Sydney. "When you are averaging 225mph and you are inches apart...it was a recipe for disaster in my mind.
"I had voiced my opinion over the last few years that when we run on these mile-and-a-half super speedways with high banking, it creates this pack racing. It takes one little mistake from someone and the result is never good. It is always a hard hit into a wall – it's always a big crash. The formula can be fixed (but) I am sure they will take a pretty close look after what happened."
Power admitted he feared for himself after his car went airborne, the Australian convinced that he would hit the catch fence like Wheldon. He admitted he felt very lucky to walk away from the crash.
"I have been running on these ovals for a couple of years now and your worst nightmare is to end up airborne and heading toward the catch fence," he said. "The catch fence just destroys the car. A lot of guys have had their legs destroyed – there's been some pretty big injuries. So I thought, 'This is it, I am heading toward the catch fence.' But the way my car landed…I hit the road first then went into the wall then I saw a heap of flames and I can't really remember what else. I was lucky. You just have to land the wrong way and it's all bad.
"Unfortunately, Dan ended up on the catch fence and that's what got him. It was a very sad day for IndyCar to lose a guy like Dan, a champion – it's unbelievable."