4.5 M Carrera GT crash lawsuit...
Last summer, "Legal Files" reported about a lawsuit resulting from the fatal crash of a Porsche Carrera GT at a club track day at the California Speedway (June 2006, p. 30). The lawsuit was recently settled for a reported total of approximately $4.5 million. The contributions to the settlement were about 49% from the estate of the driver, 41% from the track owners and the event organizers, 8% from Porsche, and 2% from the driver of the Ferrari that was claimed to have triggered the crash.
"Legal Files" received numerous comments from SCM readers, all of which were critical of the lawsuit, plaintiff, and attorney. No doubt, many readers may have the same reaction to the settlement. But let’s take a closer look at the facts.
To refresh our memory, Tracy Rudl filed the lawsuit alleging the wrongful death of her husband, Corey Rudl, who was a passenger in the CGT owned and driven by Ben Keaton at the Ferrari Owners Club track day. Rudl was represented by attorney Craig McClellan, a former racer and a successful plaintiffs’ attorney from San Diego. As the CGT was traveling at about 130 mph on the straightaway, a Ferrari entered the track at a relatively slow speed. Keaton swerved to avoid it and the Porsche skidded into a concrete barrier wall, killing both men. The wall had been placed closer to the track than its original position, in order to enlarge the area behind it for use as a children’s play area during an earlier NASCAR race.