Following Aric Almirola‘s violent crash last week at Kansas Speedway, doctor’s diagnosed the 33-year-old with a T5 vertebrae fracture in his back. Almirola was involved in a three car incident during last Saturday’s Premier series race at the Kansas Speedway.
Regan Smith to relieve Aric Almirola for the All-Star Weekend
The accident started when Joey Logano cut a tire and hooked Danica Patrick. Almirola was unable to slow down in time to avoid the crash, pile driving into the side of the #22 Ford lifting Almirola’s car off the track before it slammed back down again. Almirola immediately got on the radio and signalled that something was wrong with his back. He was late cut out of the car and transported to University of Kansas Hospital.
Since doctors ruled out Almirola for the upcoming All-Star races, Richard Petty Motorsports has enlisted the services of NASCAR veteran and current Truck series driver Regan Smith. It was announced on May 17th that Smith will drive the #43 Smithfield Foods Ford for the Open and potentially the All-Star race should he make it in.
It is currently unclear whether or not Smith will only sub for the All-Star races or if he will be back for next week’s Coca-Cola 600. Smith was a full-time racer in what was the Sprint Cup Series for Tommy Baldwin Racing‘s #7 Chevy, moving to Trucks after the team shut down its full time program. Smith’s current ride is the #92 Ford for Ricky Benton Racing and will be racing in Cup for the first time since Homestead of 2016.
Aric Almirola is scheduled to take part in a press conference this coming Friday on the 19th of May. While the exact subject is unknown, it will most likely be regarding his health and his availability for Charlotte next week. The green flag of the Monster Energy All-Star Race is set to drop May 20th at 8:00pm.