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October 15. 2013 3:35PM

Race car driver suffers broken neck in crash at Lee track

LEE — A local race car driver remains hospitalized at a Boston hospital after suffering a broken neck in a serious crash Saturday night at Lee USA Speedway.

Seth Stickney is being evaluated at Massachusetts General Hospital and will likely undergo surgery after his car struck a cement wall head on between turns three and four during a race at the track, according to Lee Police Chief Chet Murch.

Other race cars were also involved in the wreck, but Stickney was the only one injured in the accident that Murch described as one of the most serious that he's seen.

In a statement posted on the track's Facebook page Tuesday, the speedway said Stickney fractured his C1 and C2 vertebrae and that his condition was being evaluated, and a decision on any required surgery would be made later Tuesday.

"They also will be fitting the custom neck and back brace. He says the pain is about an 8 or 9 most of the time," the speedway said.

The extent of his injury and his prognosis isn't clear, but during a conversation with speedway officials from the hospital, Stickney asked that a "thank you" be passed along to the many who have offered their support.

"It is times like this when we become one big family," Stickney said, according to the speedway statement.

Stickney is a well-known race car driver in the area.

"He's a recreational driver. This is what he does for a sport," Murch said.

Murch was among the emergency personnel who responded to the accident. He said Stickney had to be extricated from the car.

"He was conscious and alert when we got to him and he could move his arms when the fire department was cutting him out. I actually shook his hand while he was in the stretcher," Murch said.

jschreiber@newstote.com


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