CHARLOTTE, NC - NASCAR's most popular driver will return behind the wheel of his No. 88 Chevrolet this weekend at Martinsville Speedway.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. was cleared by doctors Tuesday after missing the past two Sprint Cup races while recovering from his second concussion in six weeks.
In a release, Hendrick Motorsports said Earnhardt had completed a rehabilitation program directed by Dr. Jerry Petty, who consulted throughout with Dr. Micky Collins, director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Sports Medicine Concussion Program.
Earnhardt ran 123 laps in a test Monday at Gresham Motorsports Park in Jefferson, Ga., that was monitored by Dr. Petty and then met Tuesday morning with the Charlotte neurosurgeon, who sat Earnhardt down two weeks ago because the driver was suffering persistent headaches.
"Dale Jr. has done everything asked of him," Petty said in a release. "He hadn't had a headache since Oct. 12, and we have not been able to provoke any symptoms since that time. I have informed NASCAR and Hendrick Motorsports that he is medically cleared for all NASCAR-related activity."
Earnhardt had visited Dr. Collins in Pittsburgh a week earlier, and team owner Rick Hendrick said Sunday that his driver had been progressing well with no setbacks.
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