Dale Earnhardt Jr. to donate brain for concussion research | NASCAR | Sporting News
Earnhardt, 41, like many veteran NASCAR drivers, is no stranger to hard crashes and head injuries similar to what football players endured before being diagnosed with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy post-mortem.
Earnhardt got a concussion in the Fontana race in April but did not disclose the injury until September while continuing to race. Ten years later, Earnhardt had two concussions in six weeks, one he self-diagnosed at a tire test in Kansas and another after a big crash at Talladega. Afterward, he voluntarily went to a doctor for an evaluation and had to sit out two Chase races in October because of the injury.
While Earnhardt shows no ill effects of the concussions thanks to NASCAR's improved safety, other drivers aren't so lucky. Hall of Famer Fred Lorenzen was found to have dementia in 2009 along with short-term memory loss. His family has met with NASCAR officials to discuss his declining health.