Racer who died will be honored this weekend

Published 11:09 pm Thursday, May 19, 2016

Darren Dwayne Bryant, who died while drag racing at Selma Motorsports Park Saturday, will be honored at the park on Saturday, May 28. 

“He was a great person. A very friendly guy, uplifting and fun to be around,” said racetrack promoter and friend Patrick Callen. “He was just always in good spirits.”

Bryant was from Montgomery and died in an ambulance to the hospital in Montgomery after being ejected from his Chevrolet S10 pickup truck during a drag race in Selma.

Capt. Mike Granthum said Wednesday Bryant was hit from behind by another truck he was racing with, but the incident is being classified as an accident.

“We don’t have reason to believe at this time that it was anything criminal at all,” Granthum said.

Hundreds of witnesses were in attendance Saturday night, and Callen said the racing community in Selma has already rallied together to donate to Bryant’s family.

“It was definitely devastating for the racing community,” Callen said. “He was just like family at the track, but we just all try to pull together and still do what he would want us to do, and that’s race. We don’t want to just stop doing what we all love to do.”

Callen said the track at Selma Motorsports Park is an eighth of a mile, and the trucks generally hit speeds between 120 and 130 miles per hour.

The weekend races also draw big crowds, Callen said, with roughly 600 or 700 spectators attending.

Callen said there is an inherent risk in drag racing, and he said it’s always important for racers to wear their protective gear and drive responsibly.

“We see wrecks all the time,” Callen said. “It’s not the first fatality I’ve seen. It’s just close to home, that’s all.”

The benefit to honor Bryant on May 28 is scheduled to begin around 3 or 4 p.m.

About Justin Fedich

Staff writer for The Selma Times-Journal.

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