Just a short time after he was initially forced to quit racing following a concerning head injury from a previous crash, until his doctors cleared him to return, Dale Earnhardt Jr. has held a press conference to clear up any misunderstandings about his current medical status and his plans to return to the track.
This was his first media session in more than a month, and during it many expected him to give a date when they could see him back on the track, but unfortunately that wasn’t able to happen because the doctors aren’t taking any chances and neither is Dale – which is a good thing!
The NASCAR star reveals that he’s still working closely with his doctors, and just taking it one evaluation at a time…which could take a while as he says that they are spaced out about every two weeks.
“It’s frustrating to have to do it that way, but that’s the process. We hope and expect that when we go back for the next evaluation that we’re symptom-free and can start to see a timeline develop.”
He appeared at Watkins Glen for the upcoming race and reveals that he was ‘nervous coming back’ but he had missed his team and the track too much to stay away.
Overall, his health appears to be getting better, but it’s difficult to wait out results from the evaluations.
“Being a race-car driver, we don’t have a lot of patience to begin with. It’s a challenge.”
The biggest chunk of good news is that Earnhardt isn’t contemplating any huge career changes at the moment – and partly because the doctors have said that could negatively affect his healing.
“My doctor thinks that, to get through the therapy and to get through the symptoms, you don’t need to be adding stress to your life and the stress will slow down the process….I’m not thinking about what-ifs.”
In the future, he will be providing more updates through his podcast as he has done in weeks past. This move is to make sure everyone is getting the right information and there’s no confusion regarding his status or assumptions.
While his outlook is great, he admits that even if he’s declared to be symptom-free, he’s uncertain if he will immediately jump behind the wheel of a racer again.
Watch the highlights from his press conference below and let us know what your thoughts are in the comments.