ROSSBURG, OH – Though the 46th running of Eldora’s World 100 will be remembered for 19-year-old Bobby Pierce’s surprise victory, it will also be remembered as a race in which 35-year hometown hero and racer Shane Unger died from injuries suffered in a heat race multi-car accident in turn three.
Unger’s car slammed the turn three wall drivers’ side first after heavy
contact with other racers. Eldora emergency personnel was quickly on the spot and began the extraction process which required the top of the car and roll cage to be cut to remove Unger from the car. Once removed he was taken by ambulance to the Mercer County Community Hospital in Coldwater, Oh., where he passed away.
Unger had started the 15-lap heat race from sixteenth starting spot in an 18-car field. He was officially credited with a fourteenth place finish in the race.
Unger’s passing was revealed to spectators at the end of the night’s races and also sent out an email to the media outlets, though several posts from fans at the race said word of Unger’s passing was circulating widely before the start of the World 100.
World 100 winner Bobby Pierce reflected on the passing of Shane Unger.
“With all the excitement of winning the World 100, it was so difficult to deal with losing a fellow racer on the same night. Thoughts and prayers to Shane Unger’s wife and family. Couldn’t think of anything to do but hug her and let her know we care,” said Pierce.
Unger’s death is the second Late Model fatality in the state of Ohio this year. In April, at Southern Ohio Speedway in Wheelersburg, Oh., driver Charlie Floyd was critically burned in a multi-car accident, passing away three days later from his injuries.
Shane competed on dirt tracks in the Tri-State region. He enjoyed fishing but most of all spending time with his kids working on his race car. Shane was employed at Voisard Tool as a machinist.
He is survived by the love of his life, Michelle Heindl; and daughter, Lexi Unger and son, Owen Unger both living at home.
It is the wishes of the family that memorial contributions be given to a fund for Lexi and Owen. Condolences for the family may be expressed through www.zecharbailey.com.