Morgan Shepherd diagnosed with early stages of Parkinson’s disease

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Morgan Shepherd, the 79-year-old driver who finished a career-high fifth in Cup points in 1990, has been diagnosed with the early stages of Parkinson’s disease, according to his team’s website.

Parkinson’s Disease is progressive nervous system disorder that affects movement. Symptoms start gradually. There is no cure, but treatment options vary.

Landon Cassill, who has driven for Shepherd’s team, including this season, said Monday on social media that he had spoken with Shepherd earlier in the day and that he “sounded great” and “just wants to get to track soon.”

Shepherd last competed in a NASCAR race in 2019, running in 12 Xfinity events. He won four Cup races in a career that saw him drive for the Wood Brothers from 1992-95.

Shepherd made 1,027 starts in Cup, Xfinity and Trucks in a NASCAR career that began in 1970. His combined starts ranks seventh on the all-time NASCAR list. Along with his four Cup victories, he won 15 times in the Xfinity Series. His last NASCAR win came in a 1993 Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

In 2016, Shepherd told NBC Sports about growing being the son of a moonshiner, how he chased down a shoplifter and helped arrest him and his most memorable NASCAR race.