NASCAR driver Ryan Newman released from hospital following Daytona 500 crash


DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 09: Ryan Newman, driver of the #6 Koch Industries Ford, walks on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 09, 2020 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

(ABC News) – NASCAR driver Ryan Newman has been released from the hospital after he was seriously injured during a fiery crash in the Daytona 500.

Newman’s racing team, Roush Fenway, posted photos Wednesday of him holding hands with his daughters as they left the hospital.

Earlier in the day, Roush Fenway said Newman was showing “great improvement” following the crash on Monday and was “fully alert and walking around” the hospital.

Newman has also been in good spirits as he recovers, his team said.

“True to his jovial nature, he has also been joking around with staff, friends and family while spending time playing with his two daughters,” the statement read.MORE: Former NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr., his family escape plane crash in Tennessee without serious injuries: Sheriff

Newman was leading the race when he skidded out, slammed into a wall and flipped over. He was then struck by at least one car from behind, which caused his car to fly into the air, slide on its roof and catch fire while still upside down.

NASCAR Cup Series driver Ryan Newman wrecks during the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway, Feb. 17, 2020, in Daytona Beach, Fla.NASCAR Cup Series driver Ryan Newman wrecks during the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway, Feb. 17, 2020, in Daytona Beach, Fla.Peter Casey/USA TODAY Sports via Reuters

In a statement to ABC News, NASCAR wished Newman well and said it was “thankful” that he had been discharged from the hospital.

“We also want to thank and commend the first responders and doctors who responded immediately and continued their work this week,” the statement read. “NASCAR is conducting a thorough post-accident investigation. We look forward to providing more information once complete.”

Denny Hamlin, who won the race for a second year in a row, spoke Wednesday about the safety measures NASCAR has implemented in the last decade.

“Before competition, you got to have a car that’s safe. You gotta have all your equipment that’s safe,” he told reporters during a news conference. “The sport’s been very fortunate to not have anything freak or weird happen for many, many years, but a lot of that is because of the development and the constant strives to make things better and safer.”

Hamlin continued, “I thank my lucky stars every day that I came in the sport when I did.”

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