Austin Dillon will not compete in this weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series Go Bowling 235 at the Daytona International Speedway Road Course as he has tested positive for COVID-19. Richard Childress Racing shared the news via a statement on Saturday.
Competition update regarding the No. 3 car. pic.twitter.com/MUq0PqpSVy
— RCR (@RCRracing) August 15, 2020
According to RCR, Dillon is following NASCAR protocols by self-quarantining away from the RCR facilities. Dillon’s wife Whitney and son Ace are healthy and symptom-free, according to the statement.
Kaz Grala will get the nod to drive the No. 3 car for RCR in this weekend’s event. Grala, who will be making his NASCAR Cup Series debut, has 29-career starts in NASCAR Xfinity Series competition as well as 32 starts in the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series. Grala finished fourth this past week in RCR’s No. 21 NXS car at Road America.
Grala released a video wishing Dillon a speedy recovery and talking about the incredible opportunity that he now has.
I wish @AustinDillon3 a speedy recovery while I keep his seat warm this weekend in the No. 3 American Ethanol Chevrolet. I hope to make everyone @RCRracing proud during these unfortunate circumstances. pic.twitter.com/a9QNKDBege
— Kaz Grala (@KazGrala) August 15, 2020
Dillon joins Jimmie Johnson, Brendan Gaughan and Dale Jarrett as current and former NASCAR Cup Series drivers who have confirmed that they have tested positive for COVID-19 this year NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series rookie Spencer Davis also missed last weekend’s event at Michigan as he tested positive for COVID-19.
Up until this news, it had been a pretty great year for Dillon.
On June 14th, Dillon and wife Whitney welcomed their first child, Ace R.C. Dillon into the world.
Then, a month later, the 30-year old Dillon won the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Texas Motor Speedway earlier in the season to clinch a Playoff berth. His Playoff status should remain intact with a NASCAR health waiver upon his return.
Dillon sits 17th in the NASCAR Cup Series standings after 22 races. He has the win from Texas, two top-fives and six top-10 finishes this year. Of course, the No. 3 team made a change at the crew chief position as Danny Stockman Jr. was replaced with Justin Alexander. The duo have had a solid start to their re-pairing.
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.