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NASCAR Cup: Aric Almirola tests at Charlotte on Tuesday

No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

By AMANDA VINCENT

Aric Almirola is expected to test at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Tuesday to determine whether or not he’s ready to return to Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series competition. The driver said during a press conference at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway prior the the July 1 Coke Zero 400 that he hoped to return as soon as the July 16 race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, and if not then, the following weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Brickyard 400. Richard Petty Motorsports has a press conference scheduled for 1 p.m. ET Wednesday to detail Almirola’s status.

“We’ll let him go out there and run a few laps and make sure the car feels comfortable,” No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford team crew chief Drew Blickensderfer said in an interview on the Motor Racing Network. “Once the car feels comfortable we’ll let him run 30 laps and make sure there’s no soreness. We’ve worked on his seat to try and help the way he sits in a car. He needs to feel that for 30 straight laps. The other thing is we are going to come down pit road and jack it up and drop the jack. One of the hardest hits they take is when they drop the jack on the left side during a pit stop. We are going to have him come down pit road and get on the brakes hard and make sure he feels the tug on the seat belts as he’s feeling that going forward.”

According to Blickensderfer, Almirola was told by his doctor at most recent check-up that if an activity doesn’t cause him pain, he could do it.

Almirola fractured the T5 vertebrae in his back in a three-car crash during the GoBowling.com 400 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City on May 13. In his absence, the No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford has been driven by Regan Smith, Billy Johnson and Darrell Wallace, with Wallace being the latest fill-in. He finished 11th in the car Saturday night in the Quaker State 400 at Kentycky Speedway in Sparta.

After running the first 11 races of the season, Almirola has missed the last seven.

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Posted by on July 9, 2017. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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