Several cars were involved in a terrifying crash during the final lap of a Nationwide race on Saturday. The day before the Daytona 500, Regan Smith was leading the race at Daytona International speedway when his car was pushed sideways. As cars began to pile up, Kyle Larson's ride became airborne and collided with the fencing.

Pieces of Larson's car flew in the grandstand and at least two fans were placed on a stretcher and taken to a hospital, as reported by Jeff Owens of Sporting News.

NASCAR President Mike Helton confirmed that spectators were injured, according to Mark Wilson of Fox 13 in Tampa Bay, Fla.


Mark Wilson Fox 13
Nascar's Mike Helton says 'several' people have been transported to Daytona hospitals following crash that sent debris into stands.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone they're working on," Helton said, per Fox Sports' NASCAR Twitter account.

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  • Kyle Larson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Parker Kilgerman, Justin Allgaier , Brian Scott

    Kyle Larson (32) goes airborne into the catch fence in a multi-car crash including Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88), Parker Kilgerman (77), Justin Allgaier (31) and Brian Scott (2) during the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson

    Driver Kyle Larson stands outside his car, missing the engine, after hitting the wall and safety fence along the front grandstands on the final lap of a NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013.(AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

  • Kyle Larson

    Pieces of Kyle Larson's car fly through the air as he slides down the front stretch after he was involved in a multi-car crash on the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Brad Keselowski, Kyle Larson

    Brad Keselowski (22) and Kyle Larson (32) slide across the finish line after they were involved in a mulit-car crash on the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson, Eric McClure

    Kyle Larson (32) slides along the wall after hitting the catch fence as Eric McClure (14) goes low after the cars were involved in a multi-car crash on the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson, Parker Klingerman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Justin Allgaier, Alex Bowman

    Kyle Larson (32) goes into the catch fence during a crash involving, among others, Justin Allgaier (31), Brian Scott (2), Parker Klingerman (77) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. Getting past is Alex Bowman (99). (AP Photo/Terry Renna)

  • Kyle Larson, Parker Klingerman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Justin Allgaier

    Kyle Larson (32) goes into the catch fence as he collides with Justin Allgaier (31), Brian Scott (2), Parker Klingerman (77) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Terry Renna)

  • Kyle Larson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Parker Kilgerman, Justin Alllgaier, Brian Scott, Alex Bowman

    Kyle Larson (32) goes airborne and into the catch fence in a multi-car crash involving Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88), Parker Kilgerman (77), Justin Allgaier (31) and Brian Scott (2) during the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson, Regan Smith

    Kyle Larson, left, slides to a stop near Regan Smith (7) after a wreck at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

  • Kyle Larson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Parker Kilgerman, Jeffery Earnhardt , Brian Scott

    CORRECTS DRIVER OF NO. 31 TO JUSTIN ALLGAIER, INSTEAD OF JEFFERY EARNHARDT - Kyle Larson (32) goes airborne into the catch fence in a multi-car crash involving Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88), Parker Kilgerman (77), Justin Allgaier (31) and Brian Scott (2) during the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson, Parker Klingerman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Justin Allgaier

    Kyle Larson (32) goes into the catch fence as he collides with Justin Allgaier (31), Brian Scott (2), Parker Klingerman (77) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Terry Renna)

  • Kyle Larson, Parker Klingerman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Justin Allgaier

    Kyle Larson (32) goes into the catch fence as he collides with Justin Allgaier (31), Brian Scott (2), Parker Klingerman (77) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88) at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Terry Renna)

  • Kyle Larson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Parker Kilgerman, Justin Alllgaier, Brian Scott, Alex Bowman

    Kyle Larson (32) goes airborne and into the catch fence in a multi-car crash involving Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88), Parker Kilgerman (77), Justin Allgaier (31), Brian Scott (2) and Alex Bowman (99) during the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Parker Kilgerman, Jeffery Earnhardt , Brian Scott (2)

    Kyle Larson (32) goes airborne into the catch fence in a multi-car crash involving Dale Earnhardt Jr. (88), Parker Kilgerman (77), Jeffery Earnhardt (31) and Brian Scott (2) during the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson

    Driver Kyle Larson climbs out of his car as Trevor Bayne (7) rolls past after a crash at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

  • Kyle Larson, Regan Smith

    Kyle Larson, left, slides to a stop near Regan Smith (7) after a wreck at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

  • Kyle Larson

    Race and track officials look over the torn safety fencing after parts from Kyle Larson's car went through the fence at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

  • Kyle Larson

    Kyle Larson's car comes apart after a crash at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

  • Kyle Larson

    Kyle Larson's car leaves a trail of flames following a crash at the conclusion of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

  • Michael Annett, Johanna Long, Hal Martin, Mike Bliss, Jason White, Joe Nemechek, Jeffrey Earnhardt, Matt Kenseth, Danny Efland, Austin Dillon, Kasey Kahne

    Michael Annett (43), Johanna Long (70), Hal Martin (44), Mike Bliss (19), Jason White (00), Joe Nemechek (87), Jeffrey Earnhardt (79), Matt Kenseth (18), Danny Efland (4) and Kasey Kahne (5) collide and slide as Austin Dillon (3) escapes between Turns 1 and 2 during the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

  • Michael Annett, Johanna Long, Travis Pastrana, Hal Martin, Kasey Kahne

    Michael Annett (43), Johanna Long (70), Travis Pastrana (60), Hal Martin (44) and Kasey Kahne (5) collide between Turns 1 and 2 during the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

  • Emergency officials put out a fire from driver Kyle Larson's engine after his car hit the wall and safety fence along the front grandstands on the final lap of a NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013. Larson's crash sent car parts and other debris flying into the stands injuring spectators. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

  • The engine from Kyle Larson's car sits burning next to other parts from the car near a grandstand fence after the car hit the wall and safety fence along the front stretch on the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

  • Kyle Larson

    Kyle Larson (32) goes airborne and into the catch fence during a multi-car crash involving Justin Allgaier (31), Brian Scott (2) and others during the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. Larson's crash sent car parts and other debris flying into the stands injuring spectators. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

  • Kyle Larson

    A wheel, tire and suspension parts sit in the stands after crash on the final lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series auto race Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. Several fans were injured when large chunks of debris sailed into the grandstands after a car flew into the fence. (AP Photo/David Graham)

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Tony Stewart won a chaotic Nationwide Series race at Daytona International Speedway that ended with a frightening last-lap crash that appeared to injure fans when rookie Kyle Larson's car sailed into the fence that separates the track from the seats.

The front end of Larson's car was ripped away, and a gaping hole was cut in the fencing. Pieces of the car sailed into the grandstands and emergency workers could be seen attending to fans.

Ambulance sirens were heard behind the stands, which were briefly shrouded in smoke from Larson's burning engine, which appeared to be wedged into the fence.

A subdued Stewart did not celebrate in Victory Lane.

"The important thing is what going on on the front-stretch right now," the three-time NASCAR champion said. "We've always known, and since racing started, this is a dangerous sport. But it's hard. We assume that risk, but it's hard when the fans get caught up in it.

"So as much as we want to celebrate right now and as much as this is a big deal to us, I'm more worried about the drivers and the fans that are in the stands right now because that was ... I could see it all in my mirror, and it didn't look good from where I was at."

Regan Smith was leading coming to the checkered flag when he was turned sideways into the wall. Cars began wrecking all over the track, and Larson's car went sailing into the fence.


Stewart slid through the wreckage to the win.

When Larson's car came to a stop, it was missing its entire front end. The 20-year-old, who made his Daytona debut this week, said he first thought of the fans.

"I hope all the fans are OK and all the drivers are all right," Larson said. "I took a couple big hits there and saw my engine was gone. Just hope everybody's all right."

He said he was along for the ride in the last-lap accident.

"I was getting pushed from behind, I felt like, and by the time my spotter said lift or go low, it was too late," Larson said. "I was in the wreck and then felt like it was slowing down and I looked like I could see the ground. Had some flames come in the cockpit, but luckily I was all right and could get out of the car quick."

It appeared fans were lined right along the fence when Larson's car sailed up and into it.

Shortly before the final three-lap sprint to the finish, Michael Annett was taken to a hospital for further evaluation after a 13-car accident with five laps remaining.

NASCAR said Annett was awake and alert, but undergoing further tests. That accident stopped the race for a red-flag of nearly 20 minutes.

The last-lap accident began when Smith tried to block defending Sprint Cup Series champion Brad Keselowski to preserve the win.

"I tried to throw a block, it's Daytona, you want to go for the win here," Smith said. "I don't know how you can play it any different other than concede second place, and I wasn't willing to do that today. Our job is to put them in position to win, and it was, and it didn't work out."

Keselowski watched a replay of the final accident, but said his first thoughts were with the fans. As for the accident, he agreed he tried to make a winning move and Smith tried to block.

"He felt like that's what he had to do, and that's his right. The chaos comes with it," Keselowski said. "I made the move and he blocked it, and the two of us got together and started the chain events that caused that wreck. First and foremost, just want to make sure everyone in the stands is OK and we're thinking about them."

Keselowski said the incident could cast a pall on Sunday's season-opening Daytona 500.

"I think until we know exactly the statuses of everyone involved, it's hard to lock yourself into the 500," Keselowski said. "Hopefully we'll know soon and hopefully everyone's OK. And if that's the case, we'll staring focusing on Sunday."