Richie Stanaway will miss this weekend’s Supercars Championship round at Darwin’s Hidden Valley Raceway after suffering a setback in his recovery from a neck injury.

The Garry Rogers Motorsport was forced to withdraw from Sunday’s on-track activity at the previous Winton SuperSprint round after suffering further neck pains which had onset at a previous in-season test at the rural Victorian circuit.

The injury is understood to stem from his nast Formula 3.5 Series crash at Spa-Francorchamps in 2012 which kept him immobilised in a back brace for several months.

Scans conducted last week in Melbourne confirmed that the New Zealander has a protruding disc between the C6 and C7 vertebra in his neck, which is aggravating a nerve. The team has confirmed that, while surgery is not required, he will miss this weekend’s Darwin round while his treatment continues.

“Following Richie’s medical withdrawal from Race 14 of the Supercars Championship at Winton Raceway, he has been undergoing treatment from Supercars doctor, Dr Carl [Le],” read a statement from the team.

“Due to the recurrence of neck issues originating from a high-speed accident at Spa in a Formula Renault 3.5 in 2012, he has been advised by Dr. Carl and a neurosurgeon to undergo further treatment to be fit and race ready for Townsville.

“Since Winton, Richie’s health had been improving on a daily basis, yet he suffered a setback a couple of days ago. As per Winton, Richie’s Enduro Cup partner and GRM TCR Driver Chris Pither will fill in for Richie and race the #33 Boost Mobile Australia Commodore at Darwin.”

Image via Garry Rogers Motorsport

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Geoff Burke

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