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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Avoidable Contact #118: In which the author receives the "chauffeur fracture" and is discontented

The medical literature calls it "an oblique fracture of the radial styloid process with extension into the wrist joint," and it first appears there courtesy of the British surgeon Jonathan Hutchinson, in 1866. Your wrist sits at the ends of two arm bones, called "radius" and "ulna."
https://www.hagerty.com/media/opinion/avoidable-contact/avoidable-contact-118-in-which-the-author-re...
20 REPLIES 20
danhise
Advanced Driver

Race on, McJack!
FatBabyDriver
Intermediate Driver

Did he take his foot off the brakes? I watched it frame by frame and his rear wheels were locked up from the start of the skid until I couldn't see them clearly anymore the instant before contact.
Jack_Hagerty
Moderator

I believe that sharp motion of the nose into the side of my car is from the release; while I'm far from omniscient I have driven by a lot of spinning cars and they don't do that unless you release pressure.
adsinger
Intermediate Driver

He should have at least been decent enough to come over and apologize. I have been taken out a couple of times and having the offender seek me out was of at least some comfort as it demonstrated his understanding and acceptance of his error. Many years ago, I missed a shift going into Big Bend at Lime Rock, caught 1st in place of third, and instantly went sideways across the track where I was T-boned by the following car. As soon as we made our way to the pits, I sought him out to apologize. Unfortunately, he was livid and heard not a word I said. But I felt better for having tried.
RokemRonnie
Instructor

"Rabbi Shimon ben Elazar said: Do not try to appease your friend during his hour of anger; " - Pirkei Avot 4:18
Jack_Hagerty
Moderator

He was waiting for me at the end of the race and was friendly enough. I don't have any real personal aggravation about him. Just wish the damage had just been financial!
OldCarMan
Instructor

I am helping someone on a book about Roy Lunn. I drew the Renault Sports racer for him and they built it. Please contact me about the person trying to revive the series. THX!
Jack_Hagerty
Moderator

Drop me a note: jbaruth (at) hagerty dot com
OldCarMan
Instructor

Sorry-
The return to another line posted it before I was done...
OldCarMan at comcast dot net
elvacarsdallas
Intermediate Driver

As someone that started SCCA racing in 1958 for 50 some years,
"there have been a lot of changes"
V1rotate
New Driver

Thanks for the reality check, Jack. I drove Formula Fords in my early twenties, and now, at 68, am seriously considering getting back in.
Your story reminded me that I need to think long and hard about that.
Bill S
Jack_Hagerty
Moderator

For certain, you'd be even more fragile than I am, and more prone to injury... but on the other hand, in the long run we'll both be dead and we might as well get a few more green flags in before that happens!
TonyT
Technician

So, no pre-race driver proficiency observation by the old hands? As relatively inexpensive sim racing programs are, it would seem prudent to have new drivers demonstrate their abilities and tendencies on an LCD screen before letting them have actual seat time in a real-world situation. Everyone has to learn; that is accepted and crashes occur to everyone eventually. But those instances of on-track mayhem could possibly be mitigated with a little more off-track practice.
Rick66
Pit Crew

OGRB
Jack_Hagerty
Moderator

I'll bite.. .what's that
-Nate
Detailer

That certainly looks like fun ! .

Bummer about the collision and damage, the kid needs to be set down and talked to if not taken back for better training .

You're right about the 'chauffeur fracture' ~ the knob on the end of the lower arm bone snaps *right* off and it's no fun to get it fixed .

I also managed to break every bone in my hand so I'm lucky I can still ride & spin wrenches .

This sort of thong is why I'll never go racing .

-Nate
Tinkerah
Engineer

You are a true Sportsman Jack.
ShifterDan
New Driver

I totally disagree with the authors opinion about the (racing) incident and find his whining about it completely absurd. The car who passed him obviously took the wrong line into the next corner way too fast. If the author was a skilled racer, he would have anticipated the passers spin, braked heavier, and dove inside him. Ignoring the other drivers poor corner entry, going for a non-existent gap, and hoping you’d skim off the spinner equates to equal culpability in the resultant contact. Suck it up Jack, you were pissed he passed you and it provoked you into a bad decision when he spun. Avoidable contact indeed.
Jack_Hagerty
Moderator

Couldn't have been that angry; you can see me moving over and letting him by at the beginning of the video 🙂

That being said, I'll accept your Monday-morning critique as there's some fairness to it. I simply didn't know the track or the car well enough to have a library of available moves in that scenario. I also had some traffic behind me that might have reacted badly to me going across their bow on short notice. Getting over to that part of the corner would have been a little dicey at speed anyway; at least half of the move would have been on the downhill and slippery inside of the turn. And I was all of six inches or so from making it by without incident anyway, at which point I'd have looked like a genius for staying outside. Still. Could have done better, for sure.

As for your claim of "equal culpability"... I'll assume you're just kicking me while I'm down, for fun, and that's fine. There's no sanctioning body in the world that assigns equal penalties for hitting a car that starts spinning 10-15 feet away from you when both of you are already in the corner. You know that and I know that.

McDesign
New Driver