NOVEMBER 29, 2000
A case worth watching
CART and ISC are both believed to be heavily insured against legal actions but the cases may provide precedents for the future.
Legal actions are not unusual when spectators are killed but it is rare that claims are made involving drivers. In 1980 Tom Pryce's widow Nella sued the Kyalami circuit in South Africa for damages, alleging negligence in the accident which claimed the life of her husband during the South African GP of 1977. The case was settled out of court. Soon afterwards Clay Regazzoni sued the organizers of the Long Beach GP claiming damages after he was paralyzed in an accident at the track in 1980 but the cased was rejected by a Los Angeles court.
In 1984 Eden Donohue won a case against Goodyear claiming damages because of a tire failure which caused the death of her husband Mark Donohue in Austria in 1975. She was awarded $26m in damages by an American court but Goodyear appealed the decision and there was an out-of-court settlement.