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KJ Jones

The SoCal racing community lost a really good guy this morning, in a crash out at Fontana. Ronnie Marcum apparently died after his dragster crashed in an accident in the pits. Here is a link to the LA Times blog article. The word is, he was testing the transbrake (without jackstands under the car), and the car slipped off the jack and took off through the pits, crashing into a trailer. Ronnie was killed instantly.

I know I've heard people say, and even have said myself that "transbrake testing" right inside a pit area makes me sort of nervous, for the exact reason that apparently caused Ronnie's accident. Maybe tracks need to designate a remote area of the pits for those tests, or something like that.

Really too bad. Ronnie was a good guy. The kind of guy who would talk to you like he knew you, even when he didn't, and being at the track was definitely where he LOVED to be. RIP.

Accident at Fontana

[ August 08, 2009, 10:45 PM: Message edited by: KJ Jones ]


Reseda, CA
(By way of Mt Vernon "The Hutch" NY)
Thanx for post it Kaje

Ronnie lost his brother to a fatal incident at the race track @ 5 years ago and he took it poorly, he was finally getting back on his feet and this happens. Ronnie worked at Service Center and then a Team C.

Rest in peace Ronnie.

Here is a news report on what happened;

FONTANA -- A drag racer was killed Saturday at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana.

The crash happened at 8:30 a.m. in the pit area of the race complex, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Ronald F. Marcum, 53, of La Habra was seated behind the steering wheel of a dragster conducting a transmission-brake test, CHP Officer Jeff Briggs said.

The test involves revving the vehicle's engine at high RPMs while the transmission is not engaged.

National Hot Rod Association rules require such tests to be conducted with a vehicle's tires off the ground, but Marcum did not follow that procedure, according to Briggs.

While Marcum revved the engine, the dragster's transmission suddenly engaged, and the vehicle sped off at more than 100 miles per hour.

The dragster crashed into a parked trailer.

Briggs said only that Marcum sustained fatal injuries in the crash.

No one else was hurt.

2 Posts
I wanted to ensure the as many people get this information as possible he had many friends and I want to ensure they get a chance to honor him.
Services Scheduled are as follows:
All services will be conducted at Rose Hills located at 3888 Workman Mill Rd. in Whittier.
Visitation - Sunday 8/16/09 from 6:00pm-8:30pm
Funeral - Monday 8/17/09 at 11am - Sky Rose Chapel

Thanks - T

2 Posts
I loved Marcum beyond comprehension, what an incredible person he was! I am truly grateful for everyday I had with him and will miss him more than words could possibly explain! I am very grateful to all of you who have posted it helps me get through the most painful time I have ever had!
To the Marcum's: Thank you for letting me be a part of your family! You are fanastic people!! Having you a part of my life especially now means the world to me!!
To his Racing Friends: Thank you for making me feel so welcome and a part of the Racing Family!
Love - Tina (T as he would call me)

Yellowbullet Overlord
26,513 Posts
Sorry to hear about this. So tragic, so easy to avoid.

Everyone, Please take the necessary precautions with your car. It's so easy to become complacent and forget the basics.

My best to the family.

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