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Hamlin awaiting clearance, pondering surgery

Updated: April 25, 2013, 5:26 PM ET
Associated Press

RICHMOND, Va. -- Denny Hamlin wishes he didn't need medical clearance to race.

The 32-year-old NASCAR star drove himself to Richmond International Raceway on Thursday, but was begrudgingly preparing for another weekend watching someone else drive his familiar No. 11 Toyota.

At his hometown track, that was doubly disappointing because the weekend kicked off with two races on Thursday night, including the Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown to benefit Hamlin's charitable foundation.

"I'd ...

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