Top Fuel Harley riders Ron Gledhill and Tommy Grimes collided at the Harley-Davidson Drag Racing Series during the NHRA Division 7 event at Sonoma Raceway in California. Both racers were able to walk away from the incident.
It happened during the first qualifying session on Friday. Grimes went through the traps first at 6.48 seconds 224 mph with Gledhill following at 6.50 at 215. Both bikes drifted right after the finish line to get close to the guardwall. Gledhill came from the left lane.
Gledhill rode up the back of Grimes’ wheelie bars, tearing off Grimes parachute, breaking the body and hitting Grimes himself. Grimes was able to right the bike and bring it to a stop while Gledhill became separated from his bike. Gledhill tumbled to a stop while his bike ran through the sand trap and into the catch net, tearing the front end off of the bike.
“It was bouncing and heading to the wall,” said Grimes. “I was on the brakes hard. The parachute was out and he rear-ended me. He came up my wheelie bars and hit me. The back of the bike went into the air. I was able to keep in on the tires and stop it.”
“It started to drift right and I got out of the throttle early,” said Gledhill. “Right after the finish line I hit a couple of bumps. The bike was upset and I was out of the seat. I could not bring it back.”
“I ran up the back of Tommy,” continued Gledhill. “I was airborne, I hit the wall and got separated from the bike. I started sliding but my shoulder got hot so I started to tumble.”
Gledhill suffered a possible broken ankle (OK so he limped away from the incident) along with injuries to his wrists and road rash. Grimes claimed no injuries.
Both bikes were pulled from competition.
The Ray Price Motorsports team sends sincere thanks to all their sponsors for their support. They include our Primary Sponsors: Akea, Ray Price Harley-Davidson, with special thanks to our Associate Sponsor Raleigh H.O.G. and our Support Sponsors: Vanson Leathers, PJ1 Products, RC Components, CP Pistons, Barnett Clutches & Cables, Autolite Sparkplugs, Mickey Thompson Tires, Gates Belts, Nationwide Insurance, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, JIMS USA, Industrial Machine Solutions, Wiley X, LAT Racing Oils and Nitrolube. Additional thanks: Bill Hayes, Hargis Consulting, Ultra Pro Machining and Freddie Robbins.