Of all the things I didn’t think were possible, getting locked inside your own bus is pretty high on the list. Aren’t door locks usually controllable from the inside? Is there no escape handle somewhere like there is in a car trunk? Regardless, IndyCar driver Josef Newgarden was briefly trapped inside his own bus.
Newgarden sent this disconcerting tweet this morning, letting folks know that he was stuck:
It’s qualifying day for the Indianapolis 500—one of the biggest races on the planet, much less for the series itself—so needless to say, this is a terrible time to get trapped anywhere. Worse yet, it leaves us with more questions than answers. How does this happen?
Conor Daly chimed in that the door handle on his bus fell off, so there’s one possibility:
Even then, surely these guys are capable of MacGuyvering their way out of a simple, pedestrian tour bus. I mean, they’re entrusted with handling a high-tech, complicated steering wheel full of all kinds of crazy controls at speeds upwards of 230 mph, for Pete’s sake. Surely Newgarden could fashion a new door handle out of pens, twigs and gum?
Yank the possibly jammed lock up and/or out of the way with some pliers?
Slip out the window? [See update below!]
Rip apart the door using whatever tools are on hand to get to the jammed lock?
Honk loudly until everyone gets so annoyed that they open up the door?
Alternately, perhaps a well-timed headbutt is in order. Everyone knows from that viral video of Fernando Alonso cracking nuts with his neck that open-wheel drivers have insanely strong neck muscles. Slip on the helmet belonging to whoever you think may have locked you in the bus if you can—safety first! Then simply headbutt your way though a window. Easy peasy.
Fortunately, someone who was not fellow driver Oriol Servia came to Newgarden’s rescue:
Next time you’re trapped in a bus, remember: we at Jalopnik are here to help! We’ll help talk you through it!
[Disclaimer: we might advise you to destroy part of your bus in the process.]
UPDATE: A friend at the track this week demystified the door mystery for us: Newgarden climbed out through the window. Smart!