Kyle Larson suffered a rib injury in a crash during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoff race at Talladega Superspeedway on Oct. 14. He finally had X-rays done this past week, revealing a lower rib fracture. Larson is one of eight drivers remaining in the 2019 playoffs.
âIt still hurts,â Larson said. âI modified my seat quite a bit this week. I feel good in the car this week, because the G forces, you donât really have any. My ribs feel fine in there. Maybe at Texas, theyâll feel a little worse. Just something Iâm kind of going to have to deal with the rest of the season. Stinks but weâll get through. Weâve worked on our insert and seat belts and just trying to make it a little more comfy for me.â
Sunday’s First Data 500 at Martinsville Speedway is the first race of the third round, or round of eight, of the playoffs and the second since Larson’s injury. He still hadn’t been checked out by a doctor ahead of the Oct. 20 race at Kansas Speedway. He was certain, then, he had no broken bones.
âBecause everybody says there really is nothing you can do about ribs anyway,â Larson said at Kansas of his reasoning for not getting checked out soon after the injury. âItâs not broken. It definitely hurts to sneeze and cough, and when Iâm in the seat, itâs tender. Iâve never broken a bone, but itâs definitely not broken.”
Larson won at Dover International Speedway, the first race of the second round, or round of 12, of the playoffs, securing his advancement to the round of eight, so just starting the race at Kansas and giving way to a substitute driver during the race was an option. Larson opted to run the entire race, anyway, and finished 14th.