VIRGINA CITY, Nev. - A Las Vegas race car driver was killed when his Porsche slid off a curvy, mountain highway that had been closed to traffic for a sanctioned against-the-clock race.
Alexander Djordjevic, 37, died Saturday afternoon while competing in the Speed by Spectre 341 Challenge near the historic mining town of Virginia City, Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Chuck Allen said Monday.
Djordjevic was wearing a seat belt and helmet. But Allen said his silver 2001 Porsche 911 Turbo was traveling at an "extremely high rate of speed" before it rolled down the embankment off state Highway 341, known as Geiger Grade, which connects Reno to Virginia City, around 4:50 p.m.
The sponsor, Spectre Performance, billed the race as pitting "the world's fastest street cars against the clock in a full throttle blast up a mountain road."
Djordjevic told KTVN-TV of Reno before the race that it was a "challenge to yourself and your street car to do well."
The 5.2-mile stretch of highway was closed during the race, Allen said. The company secured the necessary state permit along with approval from Lyon and Storey counties, he said.
Allen said investigators still were trying to determine the speeds that drivers were reaching before the crash.
Djordjevic has been involved in dozens of business ventures in California and Las Vegas. He also served as president of a U.S. military charity that gives assistance to military personnel.