Cannonball races are truly an automotive spectacle. It all started in the 1970s as a race from New York City/Darien, Connecticut to Redondo Beach, California. The first race wasn’t really a race and only involved one team that included Brock Yates, Brock Yates Jr., Steve Smith and Jim Williams. Better yet, they did the race in a Dodge van. After this race, Yates put together four more races but they included more teams.
John Harrison took part in the 1979 Cannonball Baker Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Sea in a Lotus Esprit. He happened to be the youngest participant in the run that year. With his young age and readiness to tackle the famous run, he took off in the Esprit, ready to cross the country. He encountered gas troubles during the beginning of the run but came out losing only a little amount of time. However, he had no idea that their car would slam into a guard rail in an unfortunate accident shortly after. You can hear the story of this crash no one talks about in the video up above, courtesy of VINwiki.