NASCAR: Natalie Decker hospitalized, to miss Pocono race

NASCAR Truck Series driver Natalie Decker has been hospitalized and will not be competing in Saturday’s race at Pocono Raceway.

After running a part-time schedule for DGR-Crosley in the 2019 NASCAR Truck Series season, Natalie Decker signed with Niece Motorsports to drive part-time throughout the 2020 season as well.

One of the nine races which she had been slated to compete behind the wheel of the #44 Chevrolet was Saturday’s race at Pocono, the Pocono Organics 150.

But the 23-year-old Eagle River, Wisconsin native will not compete in this 60-lap race around the three-turn, 2.5-mile (4.023-kilometer) triangle in Long Pond, Pennsylvania, as she has been hospitalized with bile duct complications related to her gallbladder removal back in December.

So far this season, Decker has competed in three of the five races that have been contested.

She finished in a career-high fifth place in the season opener at Daytona International Speedway before finishing in 21st at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and 27th at Charlotte Motor Speedway in the first Truck Series race after the 95-day hiatus caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

She did not compete in the two most recent races at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Bayley Currey is set to drive the #44 Chevrolet in tomorrow’s race instead. He has competed in two races so far this season and failed to qualify for another.

Driving for CMI Motorsports, he failed to qualify for the race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and then competed in the races at Charlotte Motor Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway, finishing in 28th and 32nd place in those events.

He competed in two races for Niece Motorsports last year, finishing in 23rd place at Pocono Raceway and a career-high sixth at Michigan International Speedway.

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The Pocono Organics 150 is set to be broadcast live from Pocono Raceway on Fox Sports 1 beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET tomorrow afternoon.

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