Man dies on track at drag strip

Published 9:48 pm Monday, March 23, 2009

A Jefferson County man died Saturday night at the Chilton County Dragway after being involved in a wreck on the racetrack.

Deputy Coroner Awlahjaday Agee identified the victim as Larry Allen Prestige, 51, of Pleasant Grove. The victim was pronounced dead at 9:15 p.m.

Agee said the victim was performing a test run at the track around 7:45 p.m. when the vehicle struck the wall. West Chilton and Isabella fire departments responded to the call.

Dragway operations director Jerry Adams said this is the first such accident that has happened at the racetrack.

“This is just a sad time for everyone out here,” Adams said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Larry Prestige Family.”

Adams said he initially didn’t believe the accident was as serious as it turned out to be.

“It looked like one where he should have walked away,” Adams said.

Late yesterday afternoon, Agee said the cause of death was blunt force trauma. That determination came after an autopsy was performed on the victim.

Adams said track officials are still investigating what happened and said he doesn’t believe the accident will affect the dragway’s current schedule.

A visitation for Prestige has been set for Tuesday night at a funeral home in Birmingham. Graveside services will be Wednesday.