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Despite ankle injury, Keselowski cleared for Pocono

August 04, 2011, David Caraviello, NASCAR.com

Teammate Hornish will practice, qualify and race the No. 22 car at Iowa

Brad Keselowski has a fracture in his left ankle from a crash in testing, but has been cleared by physicians to compete in this weekend's Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway. But the reigning Nationwide Series champion will not participate in that circuit's event at Iowa Speedway on Saturday.

Keselowski crashed Wednesday while testing at Road Atlanta, and was airlifted to a local hospital after hitting a wall not protected by the Steel and Foam Energy Reduction (SAFER) barrier at about 100 mph. The driver wrote on Twitter that his brakes failed. Photos showed the front end of his No. 2 car, which was being tested for the upcoming Cup Series road-course event at Watkins Glen International, completely caved in.

Keselowski met Thursday with Charlotte neurosurgeon Dr. Jerry Petty, as well as an orthopedist. It was determined that the Penske Racing driver has an avulsion fracture, which is an injury to a bone in a place where a tendon or ligament attaches to it. The tendon or ligament pulls off a piece of the bone where the fracture occurs. From the hospital on Wednesday, Keselowski tweeted a photo of a severely swollen left ankle.

Doctors determined that the injury would not limit Keselowski at Pocono and cleared him to race this weekend.

"After meeting with Brad Keselowski today it became clear that, despite an avulsion fracture of the left ankle, he would be able to compete this weekend at Pocono Raceway without any limitations," Petty said in a statement released by Penske Racing. "Mr. Keselowski saw an orthopedic surgeon this afternoon who indicated that he would be able to put weight on the foot as necessary and should not be inhibited in any way."

Yet Keselowski will not compete in this weekend's Nationwide race as originally scheduled. Teammate Sam Hornish Jr. will instead practice, qualify, and race the No. 22 car at Iowa Speedway, the Penske organization said.

Although ineligible for the championship under NASCAR's one-series rule, Keselowksi has won a pair of events this season on the Nationwide tour, most recently Saturday night at Lucas Oil Raceway outside Indianapolis. He also has one Sprint Cup victory this season, at Kansas Speedway.

* Keselowski hospitalized after test crash in Atlanta | No surprise Keselowski rubs some wrong way