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USA Today via Reuters

USA Today via Reuters

Ryan Blaney’s 2024 Cup Series season was off to a fiery start. The incident with William Byron, Brad Keselowski and Kyle Busch triggered the big one in the Bluegreen Vacations Duel 2. While fans looked on in horror at the #12 Ford Mustang Darkhorse as it slammed into the SAFER barrier, no one expected Ryan Blaney to walk away unscathed from his second high g-force impact within a few weeks.

While many have raised concerns with the Next Gen cars being too stiff on impact, the fact that Blaney immediately put down his window cage and remained relatively calm onboard shows the strides NASCAR has taken toward driver safety.

Ryan Blaney shares insight on NASCAR’s improvements to impact safety

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After a destructive end to his race, Ryan Blaney was rather pissed at the other drivers who had put him in a position to wreck like that for the third time in recent memory. Apart from last year’s crash at Nashville that shook Blaney mentally, the two crashes he recently suffered at Daytona were more on the physical side, according to reports.

Taking to X, NBC Sports insider, Dustin Long, shared, “Ryan Blaney said he experienced a 55G hit in his crash at the Duel on Thursday night. He said he experienced a 70G impact in his Daytona crash last August. Both were measured by a mouthpiece he and some other drivers wear that collect data and measure impacts on drivers.”

The 12-car crash he was a part of at Daytona last year resulted in a 70-g hit after Blaney collided with Ty Gibbs and angled his Mustang head-on into the wall. The barrier itself caved to an extent under the impact, but Blaney was fairly fine other than feeling a little sore. Similarly, the crash on Thursday night during the Bluegreen Vacations Duel 2 resulted in an equally dangerous 55-g hit, but Blaney was fortunate enough to have walked away once more.

 

Bringing back the point raised by various critics that the Next Gen car was too stiff in the crumple zones to provide enough impact absorption, Ryan Blaney shared a key insight to highlight the work done by NASCAR and Ford to improve safety. Blaney was quoted by AutoWeek, “I haven’t seen a right front in the firewall before, so I think everything NASCAR has done to get these things to crush more is good. There’s some stuff that I’ve talked to them about to get it better.”

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With the Ford Mustang Darkhorse proving to have improved safety measures to ensure more of the impact is dissipated correctly, it’s safe to say safety in NASCAR has come miles ahead from the fateful night in Daytona in 2001 when Dale Earnhardt lost his life to an incident of similar stature. Fast-forward to the modern day, and not only did Ryan Blaney walk away relatively untouched but also shared that it was a minor recovery phase.

“You get over it, take Advil and figure it out” – Blaney made a speedy recovery from the horrific crash

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Despite suffering from two horrific crashes within a short period, Ryan Blaney is not one to sit around and let the setback affect his 2024 campaign. Blaney felt quite sore on the second day after the crash, sharing that the muscles all down his back had gotten strained in the 55-g impact. Shockingly, that was the most of his troubles after a crash of such magnitude!

Revealing why Blaney never looks at the downside of such accidents, he stated, “I understood when I signed up for this thing, watching Dad race, that there’s dangers. Things are going to happen. I don’t really see that it’s taken a toll on me personally. It’s sitting around, being sore and having a hard time moving around the next morning, but you get over it, take Advil and figure it out. It’s all you can do.”

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And with that said, Ryan Blaney is back preparing for the Great American Race and the 2024 season. NASCAR’s innovations, along with the OEMs proven to pay dividends in the safety department. But do you think the sport is on the right track toward a safer future?

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