Nadeau crashed driver’s-side first into the outside wall between Turns 1 and 2 during a May 2, 2003, practice at Richmond. He was airlifted to Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center in critical condition with a moderate to severe head injury, partially collapsed left lung, fractured shoulder blade and left-side rib-cage injuries.
It took 20 days for Nadeau to regain full consciousness and begin to speak again, and four more before he was transferred to Charlotte Institute of Rehabilitation to begin physical, occupational and speech therapy.
Nadeau was in inpatient care until June 6, and in therapy until July 25.
When NASCAR returned to Richmond in September that year, Nadeau made an emotional visit to VCU Medical Center to thank the medical staff. He went on to form World Karting Endurance at Charlotte Motor Speedway, and has done some driver coaching, but never raced again in NASCAR.