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Driver airlifted after crash at drag racing event in Calverton

A driver was airlifted following a rollover crash Saturday afternoon at the popular drag racing series held on the western runway at Enterprise Park at Calverton.

Riverhead Town police and the Riverhead Volunteer Ambulance Corps responded to the site of the Race Track Not Street series shortly after 3 p.m. A Suffolk police helicopter landed at the site to transport the driver.

“They just took him for observation,” said Peter Scalzo, the race organizer. “He’s OK.”

Mr. Scalzo said racing was halted as the rescue crews responded but said the event was continuing.

“We’re ready to get back underway,” he said shortly after first responders left the site.

Riverhead police confirmed there was a rollover crash resulting in an injury.

The final race of the schedule had originally been Oct. 16, but a car hit a safety barrier that day in a crash, forcing an early closure, the organizers posted on their Facebook page earlier this week. No injuries were reported in that crash. The organizers opted to use Saturday’s rain date to run another race and hold the closing ceremonies.

Mr. Scalzo credited the safety barriers for preventing a serious crash in the Oct. 16 incident.

The drag racing series debuted last summer. The Town Board at its Tuesday meeting approved a special event application for the series to return next summer, starting Aug. 19, 2023. It will be called “Summer Classic 2023 Race Track Not Street at EPCAL.” The series would end Oct. 1, 2023.

A Suffolk police helicopter departs the site Saturday. (Credit: Joe Werkmeister)