Former Verizon IndyCar Series driver Bryan Clauson has died as a result of the injuries he sustained in a crash at a USAC event at the Belleville Nationals midget race.

Clauson 27, competing in the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil in May where he competing with Dale Coyne Racing recording his best Indy 500 result.

Speaking following the announcement, Mark Miles, CEO of IndyCar and Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s parent company company Hulman & Co commented by saying:

This is certainly a sad day for the racing community as a whole, and on behalf of INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, we send our deepest condolences to the family of Bryan Clauson, Anybody who witnessed Bryan behind the wheel of a race car can attest to his elite ability, relentlessness and unbridled willingness to race anything on wheels. While he’ll be remembered most as a legend of short-track racing, his participation in the Indianapolis 500 exemplifies his fearlessness, true versatility as a competitor and the pure depth of his talent as a driver.

Clauson had set himself a goal prior to the start of the season to compete in 200 races in 2016 including the Indianapolis 500 and the race on Saturday was his 116th of the year, speaking following the announcement Indianapolis Motor Speedway President J Douglas Boles said:

Short-track racing has always been the heart and soul of auto racing in America, Bryan Clauson combined his passion and enthusiasm for grassroots racing with a God-given talent that made him the favorite to win every time he got in a midget or sprint car. And he proved on the world’s largest racing stage – by leading three laps in the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 – that he could use that talent in just about anything with wheels. More importantly, he possessed a humility and character out of the race car that made him a person that fellow competitors and fans alike enjoyed being around,” Boles added. “His spirit, his positive outlook and his thrilling talent will be missed by the entire racing community. The thoughts and prayers of everyone at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway are with the Clauson family in this difficult time.

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