Rick Carelli Released from Hospital

Carelli on the mend in Colorado By Dave Rodman DENVER, Colo. (May 23, 1999) Rick Carelli, the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series veteran driver who suffered multiple injuries in an accident in the Memphis 200 at Memphis Motorsports Park on May 8, was...

Carelli on the mend in Colorado By Dave Rodman

DENVER, Colo. (May 23, 1999) Rick Carelli, the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series veteran driver who suffered multiple injuries in an accident in the Memphis 200 at Memphis Motorsports Park on May 8, was released from a hospital in the Tennessee city last week and returned to the Denver area to begin his expected recovery. Carelli, 44, suffered a concussion and various head and facial injuries, including a dislocated jaw, when his RE/MAX International Chevrolet Silverado apparently cut a tire and slammed into the wall at the .75-mile oval. Carelli was transported to the Elvis Presley Trauma Center in Memphis, where he remained until last Wednesday.

Despite more than 10 days in the hospital, when he returned to Denver by motorhome, he was able to briefly visit his Chesrown Racing shop in Lakewood, Colo. -- a Denver suburb -- to see his crew prior to their departure for the O'Reilly Auto Parts 250 at I-70 Speedway in Odessa, Mo.

Carelli had started the first 103 races in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, which debuted in 1995. Randy Renfrow of Wilson, N.C., replaced him for races at Fountain, Colo., and Odessa, on the last two weekends. Renfrow started 23rd and finished 17th in the O'Reilly 250.

Team owner Marshall Chesrown said he would re-evaluate his team's plans following the race at Odessa. The next NCTS race is the Coca-Cola Family 200 scheduled June 5 at Bristol Motor Speedway.

A team spokesman said Carelli has no definite plans at this point to make his return to a race track as a spectator, but that he expects to make "a full recovery" from his injuries.

Carelli reported by telephone during the NAPA 300K broadcast that he would have a final battery of tests on May 17. The spokesman said those test results "were all satisfactory," but that Carelli was still suffering some double-vision in one eye, which the former NASCAR Winston West and Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring champion described as "the toe-in on my eye being off a little bit."

"He's walking, talking and giving orders," the spokesman said. "We think the toughest thing we're going to face is keeping the reins on him."

Source: NASCAR Online

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Rick Carelli