Texas Motor Speedway has developed a nasty habit of throwing a gut-wrenching incident into its IRL season finale, and Red Bull Cheever Racing driver Alex Barron was thankful to walk away from the 2004 incident.

Having seen rookie team-mate Ed Carpenter exit the Chevy 500k on lap four, when his #52 car made contact with the barrier in turn two, Barron mounted an impressive run through the field, and had moved into fifth place by lap 185. However, an incident on one of the race's many restarts saw the American collected by a spinning Dario Franchitti and sent on a scary ride along one of the circuit's walls.

"It looks like we had exactly the same mechanical failure [a broken wheel] on the back of the car as [in practice] yesterday," Franchitti revealed after making his way back to the pits, "The first thing is that I hope Alex is okay."

The Red Bull car initially made contact with the SAFER Barrier in turn four, before sliding down the frontstretch, sustaining heavy damage as it went. Barron's helmet was on the wall-side of his upturned chassis, but the Dallara's safety systems did their job, and he was able to help the IRL safety team in extricating himself from the wreck.

"I was running really hard after the restart, trying to get up into the lead pack," Barron explained after being released from the medical centre, "The next thing I knew, Franchitti was spinning in front of me and caught me along with him.

"I hit the wall pretty hard and travelled down the front straight for a while. When the car stopped, I was conscious, but my whole body was tingling and I wasn't sure if there was anything broken. I think I was still in shock from the hit."

Barron was transported to Fort Worth's Harris Methodist Medical Centre for further evaluation, but was later released with a minor concussion and a chipped tibia in his left foot. He was then flown to Indianapolis, where he will undergo further testing today [Monday].

"I feel okay, although I'm a little bit sore and have a good gash in my hand," Barron said, "Other than that, I'm pretty lucky to be able to walk away. I'll see some doctors in Indy to do a follow-up and make sure everything's okay. I'm just disappointed to end my season this way."