IndyCar cancels championship celebration event

@TEXT:
Bryan Herta Autosport driver Dan Wheldon of England poses with the BorgWarner trophy the...

@TEXT: Bryan Herta Autosport driver Dan Wheldon of England poses with the BorgWarner trophy the day after winning the Indianapolis 500 auto race in Indianapolis, Indiana, in this May 30, 2011 photo. (REUTERS/Jeff Haynes)

SPORTS NETWORK

, Last Updated: 1:06 PM ET

LAS VEGAS - Following the death of two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon, officials from the IZOD IndyCar Series have called off Monday's Championship Celebration at Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas.

Wheldon was killed in a 15-car crash that occurred in the early going of Sunday's season-ending race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Race officials canceled the scheduled 300-mile race after the lap 11 incident. Drivers later paid tribute to Wheldon with a five-lap parade around the 1.5-mile track.

"No words can describe my feelings as I reflect on my memories of Dan," IndyCar Chief Executive Officer Randy Bernard said in a statement. "His infectious smile, bubbly personality and big heart made Dan one of the most caring people I had ever met. You could never ask for a better ambassador to a sport.

"Dan represented IndyCar with the utmost respect and integrity. Dan will not only be immortalized as being a great racer but also a wonderful person. My prayers are with Susie and his two children in this very difficult time."

IndyCar said in a news release that information regarding a public memorial for Wheldon will be released at a later date.

Dario Franchitti claimed his record third straight and fourth overall IndyCar championship.

10/17 12:11:50 ET


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