Horrific Colorado Crash Leads to Questions About Road Rallies

Tim Healey
by Tim Healey

Two Illinois men are dead after a high-speed crash near Norwood, Colorado.

The men appear to have been participants in the Crown Rally.

The car they were in is almost unrecognizable — it appears it might be a Porsche 911 Turbo S — because they went off at 140 mph or higher.

After calling it “one of the most horrific traffic accidents responding deputies have ever seen,” San Miguel County Sheriff Bill Masters added this: “I am terribly sorry these two men were killed in what was a preventible [sic] accident. And I don’t appreciate what amounts to reckless and intentional disregard for the people of our county. They could have killed an innocent motorist. Crown Rally needs to re-think what they’re doing out on the roads”.

The crash occurred about 15 miles northwest of Norwood, on state highway 141.

Crown Rally put out this statement on Facebook: “We are deeply saddened to learn of the loss of two members of our rally family who passed away yesterday in a single car incident. Larry and Mike have touched so many lives in and outside of the car community, and we will miss them dearly. Our sincere condolences go out to their families and friends.”

I wasn’t able to find the last names for Larry and Mike as I poked around the various Crown Rally pages. We’ll update should we receive that information.

Crown Rally is a non-profit organization that says it was “created to connect car enthusiasts with opportunities to give back to the community.”

This is where I disclose that over a decade ago, I participated in the Fireball Run road rally. So I might not be the best person to chide Crown Rally organizers — though I remember the Fireball officials doing their best to keep our speeds on public roads from being too insane. They didn’t always succeed, though I don’t recall ever going that deep into triple-digit territory.

Still, perhaps these road rallies need to re-think their approach. Crown Rally appears to be raising money for a worthy cause or causes, so that’s nice, but it doesn’t change the fact that when a lot of people with a lot of money gather their high-performance rides for these rallies, there are always those who give into temptation and let their ego get the best of their common sense. And that’s assuming Crown Rally organizers worked to keep speeds appropriate. It’s possible they didn’t, though we have no evidence either way.

I don’t think road rallies should be banned. But if they are to continue, and continue using public roads, they must keep the speeds sane. Save the hairy stuff for the track, ladies and gents.

[Image: Screenshot from Crown Rally Web site]

Tim Healey
Tim Healey

Tim Healey grew up around the auto-parts business and has always had a love for cars — his parents joke his first word was “‘Vette”. Despite this, he wanted to pursue a career in sports writing but he ended up falling semi-accidentally into the automotive-journalism industry, first at Consumer Guide Automotive and later at Web2Carz.com. He also worked as an industry analyst at Mintel Group and freelanced for About.com, CarFax, Vehix.com, High Gear Media, Torque News, FutureCar.com, Cars.com, among others, and of course Vertical Scope sites such as AutoGuide.com, Off-Road.com, and HybridCars.com. He’s an urbanite and as such, doesn’t need a daily driver, but if he had one, it would be compact, sporty, and have a manual transmission.

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  • Indi500fan Indi500fan on Jun 18, 2022

    I checked out the one guy's IG page. Ran a place called "Black Star Motorsports" north suburb of Chicago. He had "MOVE OVER -- ON THE RUN" lettered mirror image on the front of the car.

  • Sgeffe Sgeffe on Jun 21, 2022

    Derek Bieri, proprietor of the “Vice Grip Garage” YouTube channel, and his family participate in the “Hot Rod Power Tour” and a couple other “drag ‘n drive” events each year, and they all seem to keep within the lines. A few of the Wichita, KN YouTubers participate in rallies like the one here occasionally, and aside from brief excursions into the triple-digits, everyone seems to be reasonably well-behaved, and although they do draw the attention of the constabulary occasionally, a ticket and a wrist-slap is usually all that’s needed. It seems like egregious $4it like what killed these two idiots is the exception rather than the rule at these rallies. These two let their egos write a check the car couldn’t cash.

  • Scott What people want is the Jetson Car sound.This has come up before.
  • Joerg I just bought a Corolla Cross Hybrid SE a few weeks ago, and I regret it. But not for any of the reasons stated so far. It drives well enough for me, gas mileage is great for a car like that, the interior is fine, nothing to complain about for normal daily use. I bought this relatively small SUV thinking it is basically just a smaller version of the RAV4 (the RAV4 felt too big for me, drives like a tank, so I never really considered it). I also considered the AWD Prius, but storage capacity is just too small (my dog would not fit in the small and low cargo space).But there are a few things that I consider critical for me, and that I thought would be a given for any SUV (and therefore did not do my due diligence before the purchase): It can’t use snow chains per the manual, nor any other snow traction devices. Even with AWD, snow chains are sometimes required where I go, or just needed to get out of a stuck situation.The roof rack capacity is only a miniscule 75 lbs, so I can’t really load my roof top box with stuff for bigger trips.Ironically, the European version allows snow chains and roof rack capacity is 165 lbs. Same for the US Prius version. What was Toyota thinking?Lastly, I don’t like that there is no spare tire, but I knew that before the purchase. But it is ridiculous that this space is just filled up with a block of foam. At least it should be made available for additional storage. In hindsight, I should have bought a RAV4. The basic LE Hybrid version would have been just about 1k more.
  • MaintenanceCosts Looks like the best combination of capability, interior comfort, and subtle appearance can be achieved by taking a Laramie (crew cab, short bed, 4x4 of course) and equipping it with the Sport Appearance, Towing Technology, and Level 2 packages as well as a few standalone options. That's my pick.Rebel is too CRUSH THAT CAN BRO and Limited and up are too cowboy Cadillac.
  • Xidex easier to buy a mustang that already sounds like that. love the coyote growl
  • Oberkanone Shaker motor on an EV. No thanks.