WALL TOWNSHIP - A young novice driver was killed in a crash at the Wall Stadium Speedway in Wall Township Saturday afternoon.
State police say the crash happened at around 12:30 p.m. The female driver was in a three-quarter midget car when she crashed into a wall at the second turn.
The 21-year-old driver, identifed as Amanda Gambacorto, of Belford, suffered severe head trauma and was pronounced dead.
Gambacorto had been home from college on her summer break. Neighbors say the trip to the racetrack was part of a birthday gift from her parents.
The crash happened during a clinic, which allows fans to get behind the wheel of a race car for a fee to learn how to drive.
Friends say that for her 21st birthday, Gambacorto's father had bought her a three-quarter midget racecar. Both parents were with her as she was taking part in a clinic held by an organization called Green Flag Driving Experience.
Neighbors say Gambacorto wasn't in the car her father purchased but was in a different car when she crashed into the wall.
State police have said that their initial review indicates that all required safety equipment was in place.
Meanwhile, Gambacorto's fellow sisters from the Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority at Stony Brook University sent out their condolences, saying, "For those who didn't know Amanda that well, she was a fiery spirit who would try anything once."