NASCAR Sprint Cup saw a problem this weekend when a fan was sitting up on a fence waving his arms as cars raced by. Although there was thankfully no injury, the race did have to be stopped while the man was coaxed down and then he was detained for drunk and disorderly behaviour. For many people this was the most exciting part of a rather dull race, as the winner had already won a race and qualified for The Chase, so it was not the great battle that some of the fans had been hoping for.
However, everyone was relieved that the spectator had not made it more exciting by falling on to the track. There have been other incidents during NASCAR races where spectators were injured though and this is a harsh reminder to those watching, that there is a reason for there being a large fence between them and the action.
There were some fairly recent incidents which show how dangerous things can be. Back in February 2013 there was a crash during the Nationwide Series and more than twenty people in the crowd were injured. There was also a loose TV camera rope that hurt ten people a few months later. These incidents were worrying as fans talked about liability claims which could have had a huge detrimental effect on the sport.
This incident was different as the fan put themselves in danger. This is something which was a worry in a different way as there should have been enough security presence and the fence should have been secured so that it was not possible for the fan to get up there in the first place. There is an argument that the fans tend to call the shots with the sport as they are the ones that support it financially with their entry fees and therefore if they want to do this sort of thing, there might be a case for allowing them. However, safety should always come first and track owners must be wise enough to realise that.