Things heated up on the track late in the Indy 500 as drivers Graham Rahal and Sebastien Bourdais collided. The crash occurred after a few risky maneuvers on the track caused one of the drivers to spin out.
Video obtained by NBC shows Bourdais turning in on Rahal, nearly pushing him onto the grass. The pair touched wheels, which caused Bourdais' car to spin in a full circle and cross several lanes leading to a bit of a pile up. As the pair stopped their cars, other drivers who managed to get by the accident whizzed past them, leaving them to deal with the wreckage.
The video showed Rahal throwing his hands up, gesturing to Bourdais before their cars could even come to a stop. After the accident, Rahal jumped from the car and started screaming at Bourdais before the safety crew could arrive on the scene.
Graham Rahal and Sebastien Bourdais crash late in the #Indy500, and share some gestures at each other.May 26, 2019
The crash didn't just affect Rahal and Bourdais' race, according to WTHR. Drivers Felix Rosenqvist, Zach Veach and Charlie Kimball were all caught up in the messy incident. The crash led to a red flag being waved, and left Rahal fuming mad. The driver was seen stomping around the track after exiting his car, and tossing his gloves into the vehicle.
He wasn't the only one upset, though his reaction was the most obvious. Fans who had been supporting him took to Twitter to express their feelings following the crash. Most echoed his visible display of anger in their tweets, writing that he was justified to be angry after Bourdais' driving caused him to wreck.
"Understandable why Rahal was mad at Bourdais," one user tweeted.
"Disbelief Graham Rahal is my favorite," another wrote.
"Rahal is yelling at Bourdais before those cars even came to a stop," another joked.
"Those speeds are how you kill somebody." Rahal very upset after the crash. pic.twitter.com/HOjp1TBN8c— Robby General (@rgeneraljr) May 26, 2019
For the record, Bourdais was cited for avoidable contact. Can't imagine that makes Rahal feel much better.— Jim Ayello (@jimayello) May 26, 2019
After the incident, Rahal told reporters with WISH TV, "...it was pretty one-sided." He believed he could have won the Indy 500, had it not been for the accident.
"I'm just very disappointed," he told NBC Sports. "It's just another year to sit and think about it. I respect Sebastien as a driver, but I don't respect that move."
"At those speeds, that's how you kill somebody. I'm just not a fan of squeezing and putting people in those positions," he continued.
Fortunately, no one was injured in the crash. Several cars were damaged, some more seriously than others. WIBC reported that Rosenqvist, Bourdais, and Rahal were all "checked and released from Infield Care Center." It does not appear any of the drivers required treatment for crash-related injuries of any kind.
Bourdais spoke briefly on the crash, suggesting to reporters that he made his driving decision out of desperation. He said that by that point in the race, "nobody wants to give up."
"It's that stage in the race where nobody wants to give up. He didn't give up, I didn't either, and we wound up in the fence," he said, according to a tweet from Fox 59/CBS 4 reporter Dave Griffiths.0comments
He said in an interview with NBC that he believed turning in on Rahal would get him "to back off." He said he didn't realize how far inside Rahal was at the time, but did not explicity apologize for his part in the crash. He admitted, however, that he probably should have eased up a little bit.
"I thought he was just going to back off."@sbourdais acknowledged in his incident with Rahal that it was the time of the race where "nobody wants to give up." #Indy500 #MustBeMay @NBC pic.twitter.com/HrYuQR9xIV— IndyCar on NBC (@IndyCaronNBC) May 26, 2019
The red flag came at 3:17 p.m. local, on lap 180 of 200. Clean up crews took to the track to clean up debris from the accident. At 3:48 p.m. local the flag was upgraded to green, and drivers were cleared to continue on for the last few laps.