After being forced to miss last Sunday’s race at Pocono Raceway, Kurt Busch announced Wednesday afternoon that he has not been medically cleared to return to competition and will miss his second straight race this week at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course. For the Verizon 200, Ty Gibbs will once again serve as Busch’s substitute driver behind the wheel of the No. 45 Toyota for 23XI Racing.
After a hard crash in Turn 3 during the final round of qualifying last Saturday, Busch announced Sunday morning that he had not been medically cleared to race by NASCAR after suffering from “concussion-like” symptoms. In a statement, Busch shared that he has still not been cleared after undergoing further medical evaluation this week.
“I remain dedicated to focusing on my recovery and getting back on the track and will continue to work closely with NASCAR’s medical team and my own team of doctors,” Busch said. “I’m thankful to 23XI and my sponsors for supporting me and also putting my health first, and to Ty for stepping in to race the No. 45 Monster Energy Toyota Camry TRD. I am proud of his debut and know he will represent the 45 well again this weekend.”
Gibbs, the 19-year old grandson of Joe Gibbs and a championship contender in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, was called into action last Sunday after Busch’s injury, finishing 16th and on the lead lap in his Cup debut.
“I’m happy to help out 23XI Racing this week at Indianapolis, but again our thoughts are with Kurt and getting him healthy,” Gibbs said in a statement. “He’s a good guy, and we all want him back soon.”
After his injury put him out of commission at Pocono, Busch was granted a medical waiver by NASCAR that will allow him to qualify for the NASCAR Playoffs despite missing multiple races. Busch moved onto the playoff grid by winning at Kansas in May, and he was 14th in points with one victory, five top fives, and eight top 10s prior to last weekend.