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Trevor Bayne still sidelined

- jutter@charlotteobserver.com
Thursday, May. 19, 2011

Saturday’s NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race will be without one of the only two drivers to qualify for the race this season.

Roush Fenway Racing and the Wood Brothers announced Thursday they have decided to hold 2011 Daytona 500 winner Trevor Bayne out of all NASCAR competition for the fourth consecutive race weekend.

“Although we would like for Trevor to be on the track this weekend, we want to make sure that he is fully back to prime condition before he goes out to compete with the best drivers in the world,” said Roush Fenway president Steve Newmark.

“He has been undergoing tests and out of his routine for almost a month now. With that disruption in his schedule, he has not been able to take part in our daily training activities and he’s going to need a little more time to get acclimated to the strenuous demands of a NASCAR racing schedule.”

Bayne and driver Regan Smith are the only new race winners so far this season and were making their debut in the all-star race. Smith will now take Bayne’s place in Saturday’s Pennzoil Ultra Victory Challenge – a competition to determine who does the best post-victory burnouts.

“Obviously we would love to have (Bayne) back out on the track, but we are not prepared to do that until we are sure that he’s 100 percent,” Newmark said. “His symptoms have improved tremendously, but we’re still not all the way back to where we want to be.”

Bayne, 20, entered the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., three weeks ago to undergo tests for symptoms originally thought originally to have been related to an insect bite.

He was released two weeks ago still receiving treatment for blurred vision - the result, doctors said, of an “inflammatory condition.” He has missed the last three Nationwide Series races.

Roush will not field Bayne’s No. 16 Ford entry in Sunday’s Nationwide race at Iowa and the Wood Brothers will not enter Saturday’s all-star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

“We knew all along that there was not a timetable for his return,” said Eddie Wood, co-owner of Wood Brothers Racing. “We knew it would be a process and we continue to work towards his return.

“Trevor really wants to be back, and we remain hopeful that we’ll have him competing again soon.”

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