Daytona 500 fans were waiting for some form of relief in a number of ways on Monday. First they had to be happy that the race finally got started after numerous delays on both Sunday and Monday. Then the race finally had a winner crowned late last night in Matt Kenseth. But news that the driver of the jet fuel truck is okay from the now famous Juan Carlos Montoya crash has to be the biggest relief of all.
Mike Brudenell has the story for the Detroit Free Press and he notes that the driver, Duane Barnes, is actually from Michigan and was okay when everything was said and done.
“I was just so glad to see Duane walking down the banking,” said Sammie Lukaskiewicz, director of communications at MIS, earlier today. “Duane told me last night, he didn’t know what hit him. He is an extremely tough guy and such a caring person. We are all just so relieved to know he’s OK. The outpouring of concern from race fans for him already has been incredible.”
In a statement released by MIS, Barnes said "I appreciate everyone for taking the time to write, call and ask how I am. I am OK and I am amazed at how many people have wished me well. I am also glad Juan Pablo Montoya is OK, and thank him for his concern."
Brudenell notes that he was taken to a hospital for observation, but was later released. After all of the drama of the weekend, it seems like everything turned out okay after all.