MORIARTY, N.M. – Spencer Clark, who made his Busch Series debut this year, and a crew member were killed in a single-vehicle crash on Interstate 40 in New Mexico, authorities said.
Clark, 19, and Andrew Phillips, 28, were killed when their truck and trailer were hit by a gust of wind as they passed through the mountains just east of Albuquerque on Sunday night. The vehicle lost control and both men were ejected, state police spokesman Lt. Jimmy Glascock said.
"Spencer was a good kid with a heart of gold that was as fierce of a competitor as anyone on a racetrack," Cary JC Agajanian, whose Motorsports Management International agency represented Clark, said in a statement Monday. "His sheer talent and determination alone were enough to propel him into the NASCAR Busch Series and we expected many great achievements from him in the future."
Clark made his Busch Series debut in March and finished 35th. In 2003, he was the rookie of the year in the Super Late Model division.
Phillips, an all-Western Athletic Conference offensive lineman for the University of Hawaii, was a member of Clark's Allegiant Air Racing Team.
The two were returning to Clark's home in Nevada from North Carolina, where Clark had been preparing a car for this weekend's West Series race at the Irwindale Speedway in California.
Debbie Clark said her son wasn't wearing a seat belt when the accident happened.
In addition to his mother, Clark is survived by his father, T.J. Clark, who drove in the Craftsman Truck Series and in Winston West events; and his sister, Candice.
Funeral arrangements were pending.