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Death on a Sunday

There has always been a sense of both occasion and impending doom at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, as one might expect at a facility that has seen 67 people die in its 101 years of existence.

Thirteen-year-old Peter Lenz of Vancouver, Wash., became the latest Sunday.

Lenz, a rising young U.S. Grand Prix Racers Union biker, sustained "traumatic injuries" when he crashed during a warmup lap prior to his event and was struck by 12-year-old Xavier Zagat, who was uninjured.

Lenz was both the youngest driver to die at Indy, and the first since IndyCar driver Tony Renna died in a practice crash in 2003.

And if you're asking, at this point, what the hell a 13-year-old and a 12-year-old were doing racing motorcycles at Indianapolis, over a course so treacherous even MotoGP reigning world champ Valentino Rossi fell four times this weekend ...

Well. I'd have to say you're asking the right question.

Ben Smith's blog.