DiBenedetto out of Cup race at Texas after Xfinity crash

Matt DiBenedetto (Getty Images)
Matt DiBenedetto (Getty Images)
Matt DiBenedetto (Getty Images)

Matt DiBenedetto will miss Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup AAA Texas 500. The BK Racing team announced Saturday night that the driver had not been cleared under NASCAR’s concussion protocol after a crash in Saturday’s Xfinity Series O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge.

DiBenedetto had a solo crash on lap 129 of 200. He was initially treated and released from the infield care center.  Several hours later however, the team announced that DiBenedetto would be sitting out Sunday’s race and driver Jeffrey Earnhardt will serve as a substitute.

The driver later posted on social media that he felt fine, but was following NASCAR’s concussion protocol. “Hate I can’t drive tomorrow but I’m looking forward to Phoenix.” DiBenedetto tweeted.

NASCAR began its concussion protocol in 2014. It involves pre-season neurocognitive baseline testing as part of a comprehensive concussion prevention and management program for all of its national series drivers. Using this baseline test, doctors can compare that to post-concussion tests to assist them in both evaluating the effects of any injury and informing their decisions to return an athlete to competition.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. is currently recovering from self-described “concussion-like” symptoms and will miss the rest of the 2016 season.

Greg Engle
About Greg Engle 7421 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for Examiner.com and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.