When Joe Charles, the owner of a yellow 2016 Ford Mustang Shelby GT 350 took his car out for the final session of a track day event on April 30, he had no idea that it would be his last session ever in the car.
The yellow Shelby GT 350 burst into flames, while doing around 120mph (193kph) at the Roebling Road Raceway near Bloomingdale, Georgia in an incident that Charles described on his Facebook page, as 'a one in a million freak accident'.
The reason for the fire was a component failure in the engine, which in turn led to a huge oil leak. The leaking oil came into contact with the hot exhaust, causing it to burst into flames. The flames spread quickly through his car and then caused a fuel line to burst, sending flames shooting in all directions.
However, there was even more bad news for Charles, as the fire had boiled his brake fluid right off, making the brake pedal useless. Then to make matters worse, his handbrake cable snapped when he attempted to use it. Still travelling at around 160kph, Charles was left with no other option but to shift the Mustang into first and drop the clutch, finally bringing the car to a halt.
Thankfully, he managed to stop the car near some track workers, and with their help, extinguished the fire. Charles escaped unhurt but the same couldn't be said about his Mustang, which was damaged beyond repair.
It wasn't all bad news for Charles though, as his local dealership and Ford have replaced his burned down Mustang with a brand new 2017 Mustang Shelby GT 350R.