Concussion benches Earnhardt for next two races

Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, was one of more than 20 drivers caught up in a last-lap incident in the Good Sam Roadside Assistance 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway on Oct. 7. It was unknown soon after the accident, but Hendrick Motorsports released a statement on Thursday morning, announcing that the driver sustained a concussion, and as a result, will not compete in the next two races at Charlotte Motor Speedway and Kansas Speedway.

Regan Smith, recently relieved of driving duties at Furniture Row Racing, has been named by HMS as Earnhardt’s replacement behind the wheel of the No. 88 for the next two weeks. Smith was orignally selected by Phoenix Racing to drive its No. 51 Chevrolet at Charlotte in place of Kurt Busch, who left Phoenix Racing to drive the No. 78 Smith previously drove at Furniture Row.

According to the announcement from Hendrick Motorsports, Earnhardt’s diagnosis came Wednesday. He is one of the 12 drivers participating in the 10-race NASCAR postseason Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. As a result of being collected in the last-lap incident at Talladega, Earnhardt has already dropped to 11th in points, 51 points behind leader Brad Keselowski, with 6 races remaining.

– Photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR

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Topics: Charlotte Motor Speedway, Chase For The Sprint Cup, Dale Earnhardt Jr, NASCAR

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