A speeding race car careened off a track and into pit row during warm-up laps at a California raceway on Saturday night, killing a 14-year-old boy and a 68-year-old man, officials said.
Six or seven cars were on the track when the car veered into pit row and ran into the two victims, who happened to be standing side-by-side, Yuba County Sheriff's Ron Johnson said.
He said the two were affiliated with one of the cars or drivers but did not yet know how.
Neither the 17-year-old driver nor anyone else was injured, he said.
The man was pronounced dead at the scene at Marysville Raceway Park some 65km north of Sacramento, and the boy was declared dead either at the hospital or in an ambulance, the officer told The Associated Press.
The raceway was hosting the California Sprint Car Civil War Series on the opening day of its season.
Steven Blakesley, the announcer calling the race from the stands, said the sprint cars were doing so-called "hot laps" about an hour before the race when a car driven by Chase Johnson, travelling at about 145km/hr, couldn't make a turn.
"There must have been a mechanical problem," Blakesley said. "The car didn't slow down."
Blakesley said the car ran through a gap between the track and pit row, hit an empty golf-style cart then ran out of the view of the stands, where fans were mostly silent and left to speculate about what was happening.
He said the next thing he was able to see was CPR being performed on two people, and later a body being covered and crime scene tape going up.
The Sheriff's Department and California Highway Patrol were investigating to determine the cause of the crash, Ron Johnson said. The Sheriff's Department also serves as the county's coroner and would determine the identities and official cause of death for the two victims, he said.
An outgoing message on the track's phone line said only that Saturday's race had been cancelled, and a message left for a raceway spokesman was not immediately returned.
The race track fatalities come less than a month after a crash on the last lap of a race at Daytona International Speedway injured at least 30 fans on February 23.The victims were sprayed with large chunks of debris - including a tyre - after a car careened into the fencing that is designed to protect the massive grandstands lining the track.
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