NASCAR announced Wednesday it is creating a traveling medical team for the Cup series with American Medical Response.
The move puts NASCAR in line with other forms of motorsports such as IndyCar and Formula One in having a consistent medical presence at each race.
“This will help us, having a familiar face for the drivers from race to race,” said NASCAR executive vice president Steve O’Donnell.
“There will be a doctor familiar with the driver who was in an accident from start to finish. That’s a comfort factor for the driver.”
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American Medical Response will have a rotating group of doctors that will travel to each race. O’Donnell said the move was made in conjunction with the Cup drivers council.
NASCAR’s other safety and medical standards will remain in place, including infield care centers staffed by emergency personnel and local paramedics and trauma units.
The traveling doctor will also be available for consultation during the week after the race in which the injury occurred.
“Candidly, this is a no brainer for us,” O’Donnell said.
The AMA group will be available for Xfinity and Truck races when those series are at the same track as the Cup series. The AMA doctors won’t be at standalone Xfinity and Truck races.
Damaged cars can’t return from garage
NASCAR also announced that damaged cars that go to the garage to replace body parts due to an accident or contact will no longer be allowed to return to the race. Some repairs (such as fixing sheet metal) that can be made on pit road will be under a five-minute time limit. If the five minutes are exceeded, the car won’t be allowed to return to the race.