Dale Jr. to end 130 consecutive start streak

By Dominic Aragon
Editor July 15, 2016


By not competing in the Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this coming weekend, Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s consecutive start streak in NASCAR’s premiere series will end at 130.

Missing the race Sunday will be the first time since October 2012 Dale Jr. will not be in the field, citing “concussion-like symptoms.”

As per a Hendrick Motorsports press release, Dale Jr. was evaluated by physicians in Charlotte, North Carolina and was not cleared to run in the New Hampshire 301.

“I wasn’t feeling great the week going into Kentucky [Speedway] and thought it was possibly severe allergies,” Dale Jr. said. “I saw a family doctor and was given medication for allergies and a sinus infection.

“When that didn’t help, I decided to dig a little deeper. Because of my symptoms and my history with concussions, and after my recent wrecks at Michigan and Daytona, I reached out and met with a neurological specialist. Afte further evaluation, they felt it was best for me to sit out.

“I’m disappointed about missing New Hampshire this weekend. I’m looking forward to treatment with the goal of getting back in the race car when the doctors say I’m ready.”

This will mark the second time in five seasons Dale Jr.  will miss a race because of concussion-related issues.

Entering New Hampshire, Dale Jr. is 32 points ahead of the Chase cutline with eight races before NASCAR’s playoffs begin.

Alex Bowman will fill in for Dale Jr. at New Hampshire. Bowman has run in 71 Sprint Cup Series races from 2014 to 2015

IMAGE 1: Dale Earnhardt Jr. stands by his car on pit road prior to the start of the Axalta 'We Paint Winners' 400 at Pocono Raceway in June.
Photo by Dante Ricci/The Racing Experts

IMAGE 2: Alex Bowman attends a “Tweet Up” at Pocono Raceway in August 2015.
Photo by Dante Ricci/The Racing Experts


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