Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Results and Update on Jr

Bank of America 500
Started: 26th (Regan Smith driving)
Finished: 38th (down several laps) due to engine failure

Hollywood Casino 400
Started: 39th (Regan Smith driving)
Finished: 7th

Earnhardt Jr. set for Martinsville return

Dale Earnhardt Jr. has been cleared to drive this weekend at Martinsville Speedway, according to a statement issued Tuesday afternoon by NASCAR officials.

The statement said NASCAR's medical liaison received official notification of Earnhardt's clearance to resume racing Tuesday morning.

Earnhardt sat out the past two races while recovering from a concussion he suffered in a last-lap crash at Talladega Superspeedway. On Monday, he climbed into a car at Georgia's Gresham Motorsports Park for a closed test session attended by neurosurgeon Dr. Jerry Petty and ran 123 laps without incident. The two then met Tuesday morning in Dr. Petty's Charlotte office for a follow-up evaluation.

"Dale Jr. has done everything asked of him," Dr. Petty said in a statement released by Hendrick Motorsports. "He hasn't had a headache since Oct. 12, and we have not been able to provoke any symptoms since that time. I have informed NASCAR and Hendrick Motorsports that he is medically cleared for all NASCAR-related activity."

On Sunday, team owner Rick Hendrick said Earnhardt would be entered for Martinsville if Dr. Petty thought the driver of the No. 88 Chevrolet had healed sufficiently to be cleared to race.
"I will be shocked if he's not in the car," Hendrick said during the Kansas race. "Everything looks good -- his attitude and the way he feels. He's had no headaches since the Thursday and Friday of Charlotte, and the tests have gone real well. I think Dr. Petty is just being cautious, and I applaud him for that."

Earnhardt went to see Dr. Petty shortly after he began experiencing dizziness and headaches resulting from the Talladega accident. That, coupled with a serious hit during Kansas tire testing in August that resulted in another concussion, gave Dr. Petty reason to advise Earnhardt to step out of the car until he recovered.

During his time away from the car, Earnhardt went to Pittsburgh to meet with Dr. Micky Collins, director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Sports Medicine Concussion Program. Earnhardt also remained actively involved in the team, as replacement driver Regan Smith finished 38th at Charlotte after experiencing an engine failure, then rallied from 39th to seventh at Kansas.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Dale Jr out of 88 for next two races due to concussion

Dale Earnhardt Jr will miss the next two Sprint Cup races after suffering a concussion during last Sunday's race at Talladega Superspeedway.

According to a Hendrick Motorsports release, Earnhardt will not be behind the wheel of his customary No. 88 Chevrolet for both this Saturday night's Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway and the following week's race at Kansas Speedway. The release went on to say that Earnhardt was diagnosed Wednesday afternoon in Charlotte, and that Regan Smith will be the team's substitute driver at Charlotte and Kansas.

Earnhardt Jr., car owner Rick Hendrick and crew chief Steve Letarte were scheduled to speak with the media and offer further details at 11 a.m. ET at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Earnhardt dropped to 11th in the Chase for the Sprint Cup standings, 51 points behind leader Brad Keselowski, after finishing 20th at Talladega. His No. 88 Chevy was among the 25 cars in the 43-car field caught up in a last-lap wreck. It is believed that he suffered the concussion during that incident.

More results.....

Sylvania 300
Started: 14th
Finished: 13th

AAA 400
Started: 25th
Finished: 11th (-1 lap)

Good Sam Roadside Assistance 500
Started: 12th
Finished: 20th
Dale was running really well until he got caught in the big one that took out just about the entire field.