Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s fast start to the season came to a screeching halt Monday when he crashed on the first green-flag lap at Texas Motor Speedway.
Earnhardt ran through the frontstretch grass, which shot his car across the track and into the outside wall. His car then burst into flames. Earnhardt was able to climb out and was uninjured but his car was heavily damaged.
Earnhardt, who won the season-opening Daytona 500 and entered the race leading the Sprint Cup standings, said he simply made a mistake by running through the grass.
"I just ran into the grass on the apron on the frontstraightaway there," Earnhardt told Fox. "I was following the 43 and just didn't see the grass, didn't know the grass was down there that close. … I really didn't have a good visual on where the grass was and got down there pretty good. That's awful." (More at SportingNews)