NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver Dean Thompson has been released from a Fort Worth-area hospital after being involved in a violent crash during Saturday's SpeedyCash.com 250 at Texas Motor Speedway. The 21-year-old driver from Anaheim, Calif. was having the best performance of his career before the crash occurred with less than 25 laps to go.
After running in the top five for much of the race and getting as high as fourth, Thompson got shuffled back in the field on a late restart and was trying to work his way back into the top 10 when he spun off of turn four, hitting the outside wall before sliding back into the racing groove. Thompson was then hit broadside at speed by the oncoming truck of Matt Mills before being hit again by Trey Hutchens.
Thompson climbed out of his truck but immediately went to the ground, where he was treated by an AMR Safety Team. Thompson was put on a stretcher and loaded into an ambulance, where he was taken to the infield care center for observation. Thompson's team reported that he was awake and alert, and that he would be transported to Baylor Scott & White Medical Center for further evaluation.
Here’s what happened in this wreck. Really really terrible accident. Hoping for the best for Dean Thompson too #NASCAR75 pic.twitter.com/3nSSZ2hH2A— The Daily Downforce (@dailydownforce) April 1, 2023
Late Saturday night, Thompson'a race team shared that he had been evaluated and released from the hospital and would undergo further evaluation upon his return to Charlotte, N.C. Thompson will need medical clearance from NASCAR to compete next week at Bristol Motor Speedway.
"Just to update y'all I'm doing good, just getting some scans done then I'm gonna go have a beer when I get home!", Thompson said on his Twitter account.
Thompson is currently in his second full season in the Truck Series and his first with TRICON Garage. Prior to the crash, Thompson was having the best run of his career by far. In 28 career starts so far, Thompson's best finish has been 11th at Las Vegas in 2022.
Thompson's accident was the ugliest moment of a race that went to double overtime and ended in another hard crash. Racing for the win with Zane Smith on the final lap, leader Nick Sanchez lost control of his truck entering turn one, and he would get turned head-on into the outside wall, taking out Smith in the process. Carson Hocevar, who was running third, drove past the carnage to earn the long-awaited first win of his Truck Series career.