Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) driver Michael Annett, injured in an accident Saturday during the NASCAR Nationwide race at Daytona International Speedway, will undergo surgery for his injuries, the team announced via a press release Tuesday. RPM driver Aric Almirola will substitute for Annett at Phoenix this weekend.
“After further evaluation by two different doctors in North Carolina, it has been determined that Richard Petty Motorsports driver Michael Annett has suffered a fracture and dislocation of his sternum, the RPM release stated. "He will immediately undergo surgery for his injuries in Charlotte. He suffered the injury as a result of an accident during Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series event in Daytona Beach, Fla.
“Annett will not be able to compete for an indefinite amount of time as he heals from the surgery. Richard Petty Motorsports driver Aric Almirola will drive the No. 43 Pilot Flying J Ford this weekend at the Phoenix International Raceway as the team evaluates its options moving forward.
“Richard Petty Motorsports’ primary concern is the health of Annett and getting him the proper treatment he needs for a full recovery.”
Annett was involved in an 11-car crash on lap 155 of the 160-lap season-opening NASCAR Nationwide race and was taken from the track to a local medical facility after the accident. A 10-car crash on the final lap caused the car of NASCAR Nationwide rookie Kyle Larson to go airborne. Debris from Larson’s car injured 28 fans as Sprint Cup driver Tony Stewart took the checkered flag in a Richard Childress Chevrolet.