Denny Hamlin felt dizzy following a crash at Kansas Speedway in a Wednesday test. The driver of the No. 11 FedEx Toyota did not feel a trip to the care center was needed but did so following NASCAR’s orders. Hamlin was checked out by doctors and ruled OK and has been cleared to race in the Hollywood Casino 400.
In the wake of Dale Earnhardt Jr announcing he would miss two weeks due to a concussion, the topic of concussions is front and center for NASCAR. Thus NASCAR is keeping an eye on Hamlin.
“They’re persistent,” said Hamlin, who starts ninth Sunday. “They’re calling and texting you before you even wake up, wanting to check up on you. They do it all the time. Really, in all types of wrecks I’ve been a part of this year, it’s been the next day and the following day that they continue to check up on you to make sure you’re feeling OK.”
Increasing awareness and taking actions due to concussions has become a focus of other sports as well. The NFL and NCAA have both set forward directives of teams to help identify concussions and to prevent players with concussions from playing.
Despite all of this some athletes such as Calvin Johnson, James Harrison and even Jeff Gordon have suggested that they would hide concussions from team doctors should it have a negative impact on them winning.
When asked if he would have sought medical attention if he though he had a concussion Gordon said he would not have.
”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.
The Washington Redskins were recently fined $20,000 for improperly reporting an injury to quarterback Robert Griffin III. Griffin suffered a concussion in a game against the Atlanta Falcons but did not return.
Hamlin is currently third in the NASCAR Sprint Cup standings. He is seeking to win his first title in the sport.