12.13.06 11 years ago 6 Comments

In light of Jimmie Johnson's broken wrist that resulted in him joyriding on top of a golf cart, ranks the Top Five Most Bizarre NASCAR injuries, and #1 is a doozy. Readers, meet Cale Yarborough.

Throughout Yarborough's life, the three-time Cup champ has been bitten by a rattlesnake, struck by lightning, shot, and nearly attacked by his pet bear while flying an airplane…

Okay, the pet bear I can understand. Badasses like me and Cale often keep one for sparring. But what's it doing in the plane? Serving drinks?

But the single greatest and most bizarre NASCAR Injury happened in Jacksonville, Fla. in 1958. Yarborough was working with a traveling air show as a skydiver and leaped from a plane at 5,000 feet. At 2,000 feet he pulled the rip cord … and nothing happened. He pulled again … still nothing. At about 200 feet above the Earth, the chute weakly rolled out, providing a minimal amount of drag to slow him down. "Lucky for me, I landed on a patch of high grass and mud, which gave me a little bit of a cushion. I walked away with a chipped elbow."

My God, this man is like Bill Brasky and Rasputin rolled into one. NASCAR drivers just aren't as tough as they used to be.

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