Driver dies at speedway


For The Madera Tribune Donnie Large, shown with his grandchildren at the Madera Speedway, was on lap 21 and leading a supermodified race when his car bounced off the second turn wall and got hit by another car. Large died at the hospital, his family said.

 

A driver died during a race at the Madera Speedway Saturday night, possibly suffering a heart attack behind the wheel.

Witnesses say Donnie Large, Sr., 53, was on lap 21 and leading the supermodified race when his #78 car bounced off the second turn wall and got hit by another car.

A cloud of smoke surrounded the car because his throttle got stuck open, and his rear wheels kept spinning.

It took crews about 20 minutes to get him out of the car and on his way to the hospital, where his family says he died last night.

Friends say Donnie was a star athlete at McLane High School back in the day and his brother and sister say he died doing what he loved.

Some witnesses told Action News paramedics believe Large had a heart attack before the crash. Coroners will determine the cause of death.

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