Two Dead After Crashing A Dodge Challenger Hellcat On A Runway Test Drive

The two men, both in their 70s, reportedly jumped the 707-hp Dodge over a ravine.

Ted Soqui—Corbis via Getty Images

Two men in their 70s lost their lives test driving a 2016 Dodge Challenger Hellcat on a Colorado airport runway this past Sunday.

In a report from The Denver Post, 71 year-old Lynd Fitzgerald was "speed-testing" the muscle car at Central Colorado Regional Airport with 76 year-old Roger Lichtenberger in the passenger seat when it sped off the end of the runway, jumped over a ravine, bounced off of the ground launching into a second jump, and flipped over a second ravine before finally landing wheels down. When police arrived, they found skid marks near the runway's end and the wrecked Challenger 650 feet away from the end of the tarmac. First aid was attempted, but Fitzgerald and Lichtenberger were subsequently pronounced dead at the scene.

According to Chaffee County Sheriff John Spezze, the two had permission to use the runway and were likely to have been traveling over 100 mph at the time of the crash. "They were just test-driving this car. They went a little too fast. I don’t want to surmise. … They probably got to the end of the runway and, at that speed, didn’t realize they were there so fast. And they lost control. It was just too high a speed and they got to the end of the runway," said Spezze. 

The sheriff continued, "I’ve never seen anything like it. They had permission to be there. There were no laws broken.”