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Thu, 16 Dec 2004, 06:55 PM

Erica Enders OK After Crash In Testing
By Bob Frey

BRADENTON, Fla. -- Erica Enders was unhurt after a crash in her Pro Stock car during testing today in Bradenton, Florida. Victor Cagnazzi, owner of the car, told me, “Erica said the car did the same thing it had done on a couple of earlier runs and she reacted the same way but the car just didn’t respond this time.”

According to Victor the car is damaged but Erica was unhurt. “Of course she’ s shaken up a bit and she asked me if I still want her to drive my car,” Victor said. “But that kind of reaction is normal and I told her that she’s my driver and we’ll move on and all learn from this.”

Victor then said that several of the other drivers who were there came over to talk to her and they included Greg Anderson, Bob Glidden, Jason Line. The medical team said that when they got to the car Erica was already turning off all of the switches and doing everything you would expect a veteran driver to do.

The team will bring another car down to Florida and, according to Victor, “If Erica is comfortable and feels ready to go, we’ll stay and test. If not, we’ll come back to the shop and go from there.”

This is a statement from NHRA Pro Stock Division team owner Victor Cagnazzi of Cagnazzi Racing on today's testing incident with driver Erica Enders in Bradenton, Fla.:

"It's unfortunate that we had a mishap in testing today. Of course we're very thankful that Erica was not injured. Up until this incident, the team and Erica had had an excellent test session at Bradenton. We're pleased with her progress as our driver, and we have full confidence in her ability. Things like this are just part of racing. We're sending another race car to Florida immediately so the testing can resume. I'm sure she'll have a few butterflies at first, like anyone else would. But she'll be fine as soon as she lets out the clutch a few times."

From my standpoint, one who fully supports Victor’s efforts to put Erica in the car, an incident like this will surely get all of the nay-sayers talking and pointing fingers. That shouldn’t deter anyone on Victor’s team, especially Erica. If you think about the three drivers that were mentioned, Greg, Bob and Jason, they’ve all been on their roof at one time or another and so have most of the other drivers in the sport, it’s just part of the learning process. Erica and Victor will do well and they’ll look back on this as just a little speed bump on their way to success. Remember, you heard it here first.

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