William Byron will have a different pit crew for the NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway, as multiple positive COVID-19 tests forced Hendrick Motorsports to make a change for the previous Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway and will continue for the Martinsville race, the team confirmed to NBC Sports on Thursday (Oct. 29).
“Due to multiple positive COVID-19 tests, the No. 24 team’s full over-the-wall pit crew did not compete Wednesday at Texas Motor Speedway and will not compete Sunday at Martinsville Speedway,” the organization announced in a statement. “The status of other team personnel has not been not affected. The No. 47 pit crew, which is staffed by Hendrick Motorsports, is serving as the No. 24 team’s interim pit crew. Hendrick Motorsports has implemented detailed procedures to protect the health of our team members and follows recommendations from the CDC, OSHA and NCDHHS regarding the handling of positive COVID-19 tests.”
Byron finished 13th in the weather-delayed Texas race. He will start the Martinsville race in 13th.
Byron made the playoffs but was eliminated after the Round of 16. This season, the 23-year-old has one win in the regular season finale at Daytona International Speedway, four top fives and 13 top 10s.
Positive coronavirus tests sidelined Jimmie Johnson and Austin Dillon earlier this year as well. Both drivers returned to competition after missing only one race. Part-time driver Brendan Gaughan also tested positive, but he did not miss any races.
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