After a scary accident in the closing stages of Saturday’s NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event at Texas Motor Speedway, Dean Thompson has been cleared to return to competition at Bristol Motor Speedway.
— TRICON Garage (@TRICONGarage) April 6, 2023
Thompson, who competes full-time in the NASCAR Truck Series for TRICON Garage, was loaded onto a stretcher and brought to a local hospital for evaluation on Saturday, after he was hit in the passenger side door by an oncoming Matt Mills, sending his No. 5 Toyota Tundra up the track to be hit again by Armani Williams and Trey Hutchens.
Just before midnight on Saturday, TRICON Garage released a statement saying Thompson had been evaluated and released from the hospital and would be returning to Charlotte for further evaluation, where he would need to receive proper clearance to compete at Bristol.
The multi-truck accident, which began as a result of Thompson breaking loose in turn four, derailed what was set to be a career-best afternoon for the 21-year-old driver after he had been running inside the top-five for much of the afternoon.
After a very difficult start to the season, in which Thompson has only recorded a single finish inside the top-25 and maintains an average finish of 29th, the TRICON Garage driver sits 26th in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series points.
However, despite the seemingly poor results on paper, Thompson has shown several signs of strength throughout the early portion of the year, having run inside the top-10 throughout several portions of the series’ opening five races.
Despite all of the setbacks, Thompson and TRICON Garage have sent a message to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series field that they’re capable of competing for top-five finishes, and maybe even victories, which likely provides anxiety to those around the playoff bubble.