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ARCA's Patrick Sheltra, recovering from Daytona crash, ready to test at Rockingham

   By Mike Mulhern

   Remember Patrick Sheltra, the 22-year-old ARCA racer injured in that savage Daytona crash three weeks ago?
   After two nights at Halifax Medical Center, he went home to start therapy…with the goal of getting back in a race car this spring, and running Talladega.   Last year at Talladega, driving a car from Richard Childress' shop, he was leading in the final miles and got shuffled back to fifth.
    Sheltra says he's been cleared to test at Rockingham Speedway March 14: "The doctors were very pleased with the way the healing process has been going, so they've cleared me to go to the test."
    Safety, obviously, is now a bigger item on Sheltra's checklist: "The accident woke me up.
   "I've always been big on safety, but this raises me to a new level. I know I'm lucky to still be here."
   At Daytona he was running third with six laps to go when he was slammed from behind. "Daytona was going to be such a good race for us…but it went the other way in a blink of an eye.
  "I don't remember much of the accident, and that's probably a good thing. Thankfully we have great safe cars, and all the safety equipment did its job, and that's why I'm here talking and able to race again.
    "It really looked like the worst, but in the end it all came out to be as okay as it could be, so I'm really grateful."

ARCA's Patrick Sheltra (Photo: Patrick Sheltra)

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