INDIANAPOLIS — Josef Newgarden got the news he was hoping for on Thursday. He passed his medical testing and as a result was cleared to return to his No. 2 Dallara-Chevrolet to practice on Friday morning in preparation for Saturday’s Gallagher Grand Prix (12 p.m. ET, NBC, INDYCAR Radio Network).
As of now, it’s just cleared for practice. He will be reevaluated afterwards to determine if he can qualify at 1 pm local time. If he passes then, he will be able to qualify. But only if he passes the Friday post practice evaluation.
Newgarden was tested by Dr. Geoffrey Billows at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Thursday which was to determine his status for this weekend’s NTT INDYCAR Series race. If he passed, like he did, then he would be eligible to participate in practice. If he didn’t, then Santino Ferrucci who was on standby, would replace him instead.
As of now, Ferrucci is still on standby awaiting Friday mornings results.
Newgarden crashed while leading in last Sunday’s race at the Iowa Speedway on Lap 235. Following his crash, the Tennessee native was checked in the infield care center and released. While exiting his hauler afterwards, he collapsed and suffered a head abrasion. As a result, they transported him via a medical helicopter to a nearby hospital for further evaluation. The reason for helicopter was due to race traffic and the hospital being 45 minutes away in Des Moines.
Reports on Sunday evening from Dr. Geoffrey Billows was that Newgarden was awake and alert and communicating. He was fine earlier but with falling, they were doing this as a precaution.
Luckily, all tests were negative in the hospital on Sunday night but as a precaution, they held him overnight for further evaluation. Those tests came by clear so he was released on Monday morning to return to his Nashville home before coming up to Indy for his evaluation on Thursday.
With 2 clear tests Sunday night and Monday morning, he needed 1 more on Thursday to return to practice.