"I talked to Aric (Wednesday) night and he said when his car went in the air, both rear springs fell out of the car so the car came back down and hit the frame,'' Earnhardt said. "He said it was the highest recorded G-force vertically that they've ever seen. I can imagine that if the car slams down on the chassis.''
A NASCAR source told NBC Sports that it could not confirm that the springs were knocked out of the car. Rear coil springs must be tethered to the chassis and truck trailing arm by a fiber cable, according to section 220.127.116.11 of the NASCAR Cup Rule Book.
Richard Petty Motorsports confirmed to NBC Sports that NASCAR still has Almirola's wrecked # 43 car as its investigation continues. NBC Sports
05/14/17 Aric Almirola, driver of the No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford, has been released from a local Kansas hospital and will fly back to his home in Mooresville, N.C. today.
Almirola suffered a compression fracture to his T5 Vertebra after a multi-car accident at Kansas Speedway Saturday night. Almirola is mobile and will follow-up with his doctors in Charlotte.
Richard Petty Motorsports will provide further updates when available.
05/14/17 Aric Almirola hurt in big crash with Joey Logano and Danica Patrick, Aric Almirola had to be cut out of his car and airlifted to the hospital after a hard crash in Kansas speedway.
Almirola's car came to rest near the outside fence. He immediately dropped the window net by the driver's side door to indicate he was conscious, but safety crews had to cut off the roof to safely get him out.
He was placed on a backboard, taken away in an ambulance and then airlifted to University of Kansas Medical Center. He was conscious and alert throughout.
Richard Petty Motorsports issued a statement late Saturday night that said Almirola is in stable condition and will be held overnight for further observation.
Logano said everything was fine in his car, but then something broke in the right front of the car "just out of nowhere."
"I tried to back off, but you're going 215 [mph], and it's hard to check up, and the car just took a big step sideways into the corner," he said after being released from the infield care center. "I'm OK. Just saying prayers for Aric right now."
Patrick got out of her flaming car after it came to rest on the apron. When Logano tried to speak to her as they got into an ambulance, Patrick appeared to brush him off.
"I told him, 'I'm not sure if it was you, but I'm pretty sure it was you,'" she said. "Then he said it was a failure of some sort, which didn't make me feel better in that moment. I hope Aric is OK. He's definitely feeling the worst of everybody.''
Patrick was released from the care center at the speedway. She said she was OK physically but lamented her bad luck.
It was the third time in four races that her night ended in a wreck. She also crashed out of the season-opening Daytona 500 and had engine trouble at Las Vegas.
All that misfortune had left Patrick 31st in points entering the weekend and has raised speculation that she might walk away from NASCAR's top series after this season.
"Every time I'm doing better, something stupid happens," she said. "It's just killing me. I kind of felt like Wonder Woman out there for a little while.
"I just don't understand why so much bad luck happens."