Dale Earnhardt Jr. announced in a press conference this week that he will miss the next two chase races because he has suffered two concussions, one during a test at Kansas and one last week in the final lap wreck at Talladega. Looks like Dale will have plenty of time on his hands, maybe he should try playing some online bingo at www.partybingo.com.
“I felt pretty good after a week or two. Definitely 80 or 90 percent by the time the Chase [for the Sprint Cup] started [on Sept. 16], and by Talladega I felt like I was 100 percent. But, at the end of that race, I was hit in the right-rear quarterpanel. It was sort of an odd kind of a collision where the car spun around really quick and sort of just disoriented me. And I knew then that I had sort of regressed and had a setback. Again, you know your body and you know when something is not quite right. And I knew as soon as it happened that I had re-injured myself, for lack of a better way to describe it.” Source: Nascar.com
The real question is, will it be safe for Dale and the other drivers if he gets back in the car at Martinsville? The data is piling up on how devastating concussions can be, so, it might be a good idea for Dale to take the rest of the year off, he’s knocked himself out of the Chase for the Cup already, so why take anymore chances on something happening to him or someone else? I’m no doctor, but, in this case, I think it’s better safe than sorry. But, I know of at least one driver, my favorite driver, that says if he is leading the Chase, no way he admits he has a concussion, he’d go for the championship and not say a word.
”Honestly, I hate to say this, but no, I wouldn’t,” four-time champion Jeff Gordon said. ”If I have a shot at the championship, there’s two races to go, my head is hurting, and I just came through a wreck, and I am feeling signs of it, but I’m still leading the points, or second in the points, I’m not going to say anything. I’m sorry. Source: Yahoo
It’s what athletes have been doing for years, that’s why sports like the NFL have rules about checking for concussions when someone is shaken up by a hard hit to the head. It’s also probably going to be why I believe Nascar will institute similar rules in the future, maybe a mandatory check after every wreck or something, as driver safety is the number one priority, well, maybe number two for the more competitive.