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NEXTEL CUP PENALTIES 2004


  • Earnhardt’s Windshield too thin UPDATE 2 Penalty: NASCAR officials confiscated the windshield from Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s #8 Budweiser Chevy over the weekend. According to spokesman Mike Zizzo, the windshield was too thin and not approved. A penalty is likely, but to what extent will be determined by Nextel Cup series director John Darby, Zizzo said. The penalty should be announced this week.(ThatsRacin.com)(11-7-2004)
    UPDATE: the windshield was NOT run in the race, it was taken ‘over the weekend’. Minimum thickness is 1/4″.(11-9-2004)
    UPDATE 2: Tony Eury Sr., crew chief for the #8 Chevrolet of driver Dale Earnhardt Jr., was fined $2,500 for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that the car, car parts, components and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) for having a windshield on the car that was not an approved part and also did not meet the minimum required thickness of one-quarter inch. The infraction was discovered by NASCAR officials during opening-day inspection.(NASCAR PR)(11-10-2004)
  • NASCAR to investigate Harvick-Kahne clash UPDATE: NASCAR officials said they will investigate an incident between drivers #29-Kevin Harvick and #9-Kasey Kahne to determine if disciplinary action is needed. Kahne tried to pass Harvick on the last lap Sunday as the two cars bumped. When the race ended, Harvick pulled in front of Kahne’s car and blocked it before walking over to confront Kahne. Harvick, though, was restrained by crew members. “Kahne started running into me after a caution, so I wanted to stop and ask him what the problem was,” Harvick said. “Before that, I got to him a little bit, so I guess he was ticked off. But we were just racing hard.”(Dallas Morning News)(11-8-2004)
    UPDATE: Drivers Kevin Harvick and Kasey Kahne were fined $10,000 each and placed on probation for their actions during an on-track incident that occurred after the conclusion of Sunday’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway, NASCAR officials announced today. Harvick, driver of the# 29 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing, and Kahne, driver of the #9 Dodge for Evernham Motorsports, were penalized for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book when the two made deliberate contact with each other following the conclusion of the race. Both drivers’ probation periods will extend to Nov. 30.(NASCAR PR)(11-10-2004)
  • Rusty to be fined? UPDATE Yep: NASCAR officials confirmed Sunday they plan to penalize Nextel Cup driver #2-Rusty Wallace for an incident following last Sunday’s race at Martinsville. Wallace is expected to receive a monetary penalty as early as Monday, sources said. Fines for similar incidents in the past have ranged from $5,000 to $10,000. Penske Racing South teammates Ryan Newman and Wallace traded bumps while battling for second place, which sent Wallace to the outside lane, on Lap 494 of 500 of last Sunday’s Subway 500. After the “cool down” lap, Newman, who finished third, drove onto pit road where the top-five cars are required to stop. Wallace followed Newman down and appeared to hit the rear of Newman’s #12 Altell Dodge.(ThatsRacin.com)(10-31-2004)
    UPDATE: Driver Rusty Wallace was fined $10,000 for his role in an incident at the conclusion of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race held Oct. 24 at Martinsville Speedway, NASCAR officials announced today. Wallace, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Dodge for Penske Racing South, was penalized for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book when he made deliberate contact with the #12 Alltel car of Ryan Newman as the field returned to pit lane following the conclusion of the race.(NASCAR PR)(11-2-2004)
  • Three Fined for Infractions: Three others were issued penalties for equipment infractions at Martinsville. Gil Martin, crew chief for the #31 Cingular Wireless Chevrolet of driver Robby Gordon, and co-crew chief Chris Andrews will share in a $10,000 fine for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-W (Improperly attached weight) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book.
    Mario Gosselin, driver of the #80 Hover Motorsports Ford, was fined $500 for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-17.1B (3) for an expired manufacturer’s date on his driver’s head-and-neck restraint device.(NASCAR PR)(11-2-2004)
  • Dale Jr.’s appeal to be heard Monday – UPHELD: The National Stock Car Racing Commission will hear Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s appeal on his 25-point penalty at 11:00am Monday at an undisclosed location within a two-hour drive of Charlotte, N.C., according to a team official. Richie Gilmore, director of competition at Dale Earnhardt Inc., said he and Earnhardt will present the appeal. Gilmore says that if the commission rules against Earnhardt, the team does not plan to appeal to the National Stock Car Racing Commissioner, whose decision is final. “I think we decided whatever happens here, we’re done with it,” Gilmore said Thursday night at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. “Our focus is on the chase right now, and we just need to get back to racing and let this get past us and not let the 25 points bother us if we lose.” The commission is a review board independent of NASCAR. The chairman, George Silbermann, is employed by NASCAR. Since Silbermann’s appointment to chairman in November 1999, the commission has upheld 37 of the 53 appeals it has heard. The commission reduced a penalty 11 times. The commission overturned a NASCAR decision four times. Once, the commission increased a penalty.(Roanoke Times)(10-15/17-2004)
    UPHELD: The National Stock Car Racing Commission has upheld NASCAR’s $10,000 fine and 25-point penalty levied against Nextel Cup driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. for using profanity in a live, post-race interview following the October 10 race at Talladega.(Thartsracin.com)(10-18-2004)
  • Lots of Penalties, fines for infractions at Talladega:
    Roush Racing and Evernham Motorsports were issued the most severe penalties among the 12 overall for rules violations that occurred during this past weekend’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup event at Talladega Superspeedway.
    Roush Racing received four of the penalties for an unapproved spoiler adjustment on the #16 National Guard Ford that occurred after pre-race inspection had been completed. Driver Greg Biffle was penalized 25 driver championship points; car owner Geoff Smith lost 25 championship owner points; crew chief Doug Richert was fined $25,000; and crew member Michael Hillman Jr. was suspended from NASCAR until Oct. 20 including the next two NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races, beginning with Kansas Speedway’s race this weekend. Hillman Jr. also was placed on probation until Dec. 31. The team was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book.
    Evernham Racing received three penalties for an unapproved spoiler modification to the #9 Dodge that occurred after pre-event inspection and was discovered by NASCAR officials during pre-qualifying inspection. Driver Kasey Kahne was penalized 25 driver championship points; car owner Ray Evernham lost 25 championship owner points; and crew chief Tommy Baldwin was fined $25,000. The team was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book.
    Pat Tryson, crew chief of the No. 6 Ford driven by Mark Martin, was issued a pair of fines for separate infractions that totaled $15,000. He was fined $10,000 for an unapproved air directional device and $5,000 for an unapproved windshield mounting. He was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book. Both infractions were found by NASCAR officials during pre-qualifying inspection.
    Peter Rondeau, crew chief of the No. 1 Chevrolet driven by Kenny Wallace, was fined $10,000 for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and Section 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book/Technical Bulletin for unapproved spring mounting plates and bolts. The infraction was found during opening-day inspection.
    Michael McSwain, crew chief of the No. 21 Ford driven by Ricky Rudd, was fined $1,000 for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and Section 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book for unapproved windshield clips. The infraction was discovered during pre-qualifying inspection.
    Doug Randolph, crew chief of the No. 10 Chevrolet driven by Scott Riggs, was fined $500 for violating Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and Section 17.2-C (Seat belts) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book for seat belts with an expired manufacturer’s date. The infraction was discovered during opening-day inspection.(NASCAR PR)(10-7-2004)
  • No Delay? Dale Jr. should had said ‘poop’ UPDATE fined and docked points TO APPEAL: been asked by readers if Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be fine/penalized for his on-air curse during his post-race-win interview at Talladega on NBC. That is up to NASCAR, but here are a few tidbits found accross the Internet on the situation:
    1) During the interview in Victory Lane with NBC’s Matt Yocum, Earnhardt Jr. was asked what it meant to win for the fifth time at Talladega. Earnhardt Jr. replied, “It don’t mean s— right now. Daddy’s won here 10 times.” NBC later issued an apology for the inappropriate language. After several media requests, NASCAR is reviewing the post-race videotape, according to spokesman Mike Zizzo. Any penalty would be handed down Tuesday at the earliest, Zizzo said.(NASCAR.com)
    2) ……off-color words he uttered on NBC during a postrace interview, which NASCAR is reviewing before deciding any disciplinary action. Earlier this season Johnny Sauter and Ron Hornaday Jr. each were fined $10,000 and docked 25 championship points for talking ‘dirty’ [using the same word…but in anger] during Busch Series broadcasts. If precedence holds, Earnhardt could go from 13 points ahead of second-place Kurt Busch to 12 points down with seven races left in the Chase for the Nextel Cup. “If anybody was offended by that, I can’t imagine why they’d tune in to a race in the first place,” Earnhardt said, later joking that he needed some Dale Carnegie classes. “There were a lot of hand gestures going on through the race, and that was weak compared to what you go through on the racetrack. But I hope they understand it was in jubilation. … When you’re happy and joyous about something, it’s different from being angry and cursing in anger.”(USA Today)
    3) Asked about the matter, NASCAR vp/communications Jim Hunter said, “We’re looking into it,” adding that a decision would be made by Monday or Tuesday. Earnhardt seemed strangely subdued after the race, apparently aware that his slip of the tongue could prove to be costly. “I’m worried about losing the points lead, because I don’t know what kind of deal will come out of it,” he said. “If you guys [press] push the issue, in three or four days it could be a big problem. I just hope everybody understands it came out of jubilation.”(Speed Channel)(10-4-2004)
    UPDATE – Fined and Docked 25 points: Driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. was penalized with a loss of 25 championship driver points and a $10,000 fine for an inappropriate post-race comment during the live national television broadcast of Sunday’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR officials announced today. Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #8 Budwesier Chevrolet, was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book for using inappropriate language. The penalty also will extend to the team as Dale Earnhardt Inc. will lose 25 championship owner points for the actions of its driver. Earnhardt Jr.’s championship points total will be adjusted from 5,543 points to 5,518 as a result of the penalty, and will drop him from first to second in the Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup. Kurt Busch and Roush Racing will assume the lead with 5,530 points, 12 ahead of Earnhardt Jr. and DEI, respectively.(NASCAR PR)
    TO APPEAL: XM Radio – NASCAR Channel 144 reports that DEI will appeal the penalty.
    DEI Statement/Appeal: Dale Earnhardt, Inc. announced today that the #8 Budweiser eam that fields Chevrolet Monte Carlos for Dale Earnhardt, Jr. in the Nextel Cup Series, will appeal the NASCAR-imposed post-race penalty that cost the team 25 championship points and $10,000. Richie Gilmore, DEI Director of Competition, cites that the 25- point penalty under the new 10-race “Chase for the Nextel Cup” format could be devastating with only seven races remaining. “This is a huge setback for the entire company,” Gilmore said. “We’re in a sport that focuses its primary attention on the final 10 races of the season and we’re racing against formidable teams for a championship. We’re facing a setback from a competition standpoint for something that should be considered a personal foul. We have no choice but to appeal the points portion of the penalty. I think we’re the only sport that takes points off of the board after they’ve been scored. The popularity of this sport is based on colorful personalities and the fact that everyone can relate to these drivers and their emotions. Now, it seems like that’s a detriment. Dale Jr.’s comment was made in the excitement of the moment, seconds after he climbed out of the car. It wasn’t made in anger or hostility directed at anyone. This whole incident is going to force everyone in the sport to rethink showing any excitement in what should be a jubilant moment. We’ve had hundreds of calls from fans that support us. Our sponsors have vowed their support, as well. If nothing else, we can look back at this race and always remember it as one where we were reminded of the loyalty everyone has toward Dale Jr., the No. 8 team and our company.”(DEI Site)(10-5-2004)
  • Two Crew Chiefs fined: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series crew chief #97-Jimmy Fennig was fined $1,000 for a fuel cell spacer infraction that occurred at last weekend’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup event at New Hampshire International Speedway and crew chief #17-Robbie Reiser received the identical fine for the same infraction at the Sept. 11 event held at Richmond International Raceway, NASCAR officials announced today.(NASCAR PR)(9-23-2004)
  • Four Crew Chief’s Fined: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series crew chiefs Pat Tryson and Marc Reno were fined $5,000 each for fuel cell bladder infractions that occurred during last weekend’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup event at Michigan International Speedway, NASCAR officials announced today. Tryson, crew chief for the #6 Viagra Ford of driver Mark Martin, and Reno, crew chief for the #09 Dodge of driver Bobby Hamilton Jr., both violated Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that the car, car parts, components and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book for an unapproved modification to the fuel cell bladder nut ring. Both infractions were discovered by NASCAR officials during Friday’s opening-day inspection.
    NASCAR also announced $500 fines to NASCAR NEXTEL Cup crew chiefs Todd Berrier and Lee McCall for rule violations that occurred the previous week at Watkins Glen. Berrier, crew chief for the #29 GM Goodwrench Chevrolet of driver Kevin Harvick, was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that the car, car parts, components and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book for an unapproved fuel cell spacer.
    McCall, crew chief for the #40 Coor’s Light Dodge of driver Sterling Marling, was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that the car, car parts, components and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book for driver shoulder harness belts in which the manufacturer’s date had expired. Both infractions were discovered by NASCAR officials during opening-day inspection.(NASCAR PR)(8-25-2004)
  • Crew Chief Fined: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series crew chief Geoffrey Kaeser was fined $5,000 for a fuel cell bladder infraction that occurred during last weekend’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup event at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, NASCAR officials announced today. Kaeser, crew chief for the #34 El Paso Dodge of driver Geoffrey Bodine, was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that the car, car parts, components and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) for an unapproved modification to the fuel cell bladder nut ring. The infraction was discovered by NASCAR officials during Friday’s opening-day inspection.(NASCAR PR)(8-13-2004)
  • ‘Bottle Gate’ continues UPDATE Johnson fined $10k: NASCAR is expected to levy a fine as early as Tuesday, upwards of $15,000 to Nextel Cup driver Jimmie Johnson for placing a sign atop his #48 Lowe’s Chevrolet and obscuring the view of a sponsor’s product during Sunday’s Victory Lane ceremonies at Pocono Raceway, ThatsRacin.com has learned. Following his win in Sunday’s Pennsylvania 500 in Long Pond, Pa., Johnson exited his car and placed a Lowe’s sign – Lowe’s is the primary sponsor of Johnson’s team – atop his car and in front of a large blue Powerade bottle. Powerade is an official sponsor of NASCAR. During the course of Victory Lane ceremonies, the Lowe’s sign actually fell off the car, but was inexplicably picked up and replaced in its original position obscuring the Powerade bottle by NASCAR official Dave Finley, witnesses said. Hendrick Motorsports officials were notified Monday of a likely fine, sources said. Officials with Hendrick and NASCAR were unavailable for comment late Monday.
    Two weeks ago during a pre-race drivers meeting at New Hampshire, NASCAR president Mike Helton had told drivers “do not take it upon yourselves to remove products” placed on cars as they come in for victory celebrations. Johnson did not remove or move the Powerade bottle Sunday, witnesses said. Many of the recent issues have mostly been with a the large, blue Powerade bottle placed atop winning cars that some drivers have pushed or even knocked off their cars. The drivers who do so have affiliations with Gatorade or with Pepsi, which owns Gatorade. Powerade is a Coca-Cola product. “You can maneuver away from it or work around it,” Helton said at New Hampshire. “If that doesn’t begin happening again, we will be forced to deal with it.”
    The fine for Johnson, the series points leader, would be the first for such issues this season. Johnson was asked about the Victory Lane incident Sunday night during his post-race winner’s interview. Asked if he was told to touch or not touch any bottles in Victory Lane, Johnson replied, “No, I wasn’t. I was a little more aware of camera angles to try to honor my sponsors and take care of them. I even took the liberty of putting a sign up in front of brand ‘X’. It’s weird that the driver – in Victory Lane – has to worry about defending and honoring your sponsor because of relationships that exist outside of your control. I hope we get this rectified and when you pull into Gatorade Victory Lane you’re drinking Gatorade and that’s all there is to it.”(ThatsRacin.com)(8-3-2004)
    UPDATE: Jimmie Johnson was fined $10,000 for a post-race incident that occurred Sunday in Victory Lane at Pocono Raceway, NASCAR officials announced today. Johnson was fined for not following the directive of a NASCAR official as well as actions detrimental to stock car racing. He was in violation of Sections 12-2 and 12-4-A, respectively, of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book. “NASCAR President Mike Helton thoroughly explained the proper protocol for victory lane ceremonies in a drivers’ meeting two weeks ago at New Hampshire,” NASCAR spokesperson Jim Hunter said. “We’re going to address these situations in an orderly fashion, just as we always have. We expect our drivers to follow this protocol.”(NASCAR PR)(8-3-2004)
  • Crew Chiefs fined for Daytona infractions: Four NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series crew chiefs were fined for inspection violations during the recent Pepsi 400 weekend at Daytona International Speedway.
    Marc Reno, the crew chief for the #09 Miccosukee Resorts Dodge of Bobby Hamilton Jr., and Jimmy Elledge, the crew chief for the #41 Target Dodge driven by Casey Mears, were each fined $20,000 for violating Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (Actions detrimental to stock car racing), because of a misaligned carburetor throttle body. Both infractions were discovered during pre-race inspection at Daytona.
    Reno also was fined $5,000 for violating Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (Actions detrimental to stock car racing), because of a non-approved rear deck lid that did not fit the templates. The infraction was discovered during opening-day inspection. Todd Berrier, the crew chief for the #29 Goodwrench Chevrolet of Kevin Harvick, and Kevin Hamlin, the crew chief for the #30 America Online Chevrolet of Dave Blaney, were each fined $1,000 for violating Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (Actions detrimental to stock car racing), because of an unapproved oil tank breather hose. Both infractions were discovered during pre-qualifying inspection.(NASCAR PR)(7-14-2004)
  • Baldwin Fined: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup crew chief Tommy Baldwin was fined $10,000 for an incident that occurred
    this past weekend at Chicagoland Speedway. Baldwin, the crew chief for the #9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge of Kasey Kahne, was fined $5,000 for violating Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (Actions detrimental to stock car racing). That penalty was assessed for being involved in an altercation in another Competitor’s pit area. Baldwin also was fined $5,000 for violating Section 9-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (The crew chief assumes responsibility for the actions of his/her driver, car owner and team members), and placed on probation until Dec. 31, 2004. The incident occurred during Sunday’s Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland.(NASCAR PR)(7-13-2004)
    AND Evernham Statement: Responding to the penalties imposed by NASCAR today, Ray Evernham, president and CEO of Evernham Motorsports, issued the following statement: “NASCAR has made its decision; now it’s time to move on,” Evernham said. “I understand why Tommy (Baldwin, crew chief for the No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge) and the team reacted the way they did in the heat of competition. NASCAR has rules. I agree with rules. Evernham Motorsports also has rules. NASCAR has made its decision and imposed its penalties. Now, I will impose the appropriate penalties for Evernham Motorsports. This is behind us now. As a team, our focus is on the upcoming events and the future.”(Clear!Blue PR)(7-14-2004)
  • Stewart fined, docked points, on probation NO Suspension: NASCAR is not taking lightly Tony Stewart’s attack of rookie Brian Vickers after Sunday’s road race in Sonoma. Stewart will receive a fine that could be as much as $50,000, a loss of at least 25 points in the Nextel Cup race, which will cost him at least one spot in the standings, and a lengthy probation, sources close to the sport said Tuesday. An official announcement will come Wednesday.(The State)
    UPDATE: Tony Stewart has been fined $50,000, penalized 25 driver championship points and placed on probation until Aug. 18, resulting from a post-race altercation with fellow driver Brian Vickers last Sunday at Infineon Raceway. In addition, Joe Gibbs, owner of the No. 20 Chevrolets driven by Stewart, has been penalized 25 car owner championship points. The point penalty drops Stewart one spot in the series standings, to sixth place. Stewart was found in violation of Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (actions detrimental to stock car racing; involved in altercation with another competitor). “This action we’ve taken speaks for itself,” NASCAR President Mike Helton said. “Tony Stewart is well aware of what is expected of him going forward.”(NASCAR PR)(6-30-2004)
  • #77 Crew Chief Fined: Shane Wilson, crew chief for the #77 Dodge driven by Brendan Gaughan, has been fined $10,000 and placed on probation until Dec. 31. He was found in violation of Section 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (unapproved fuel cell container modification).(NASCAR PR)(6-30-2004)
  • Belt Confiscated from #49 UPDATE Penalty: Confiscated from Ken Schrader’s #49 Schwan’s Home Service Dodge at Michigan International Speedway was a Crotch Belt. The belt in violation, as it had surpassed the two year manufacturer’s date, stamped on the belt. Evidently the rest of the belt met requirements.(Insiderracing.com)(6-20-2004)
    UPDATE: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series crew chief Scott Eggleston has been fined $500 for a driver restraint equipment infraction that occurred this past weekend at Michigan International Speedway. Eggleston – crew chief for the No. 49 Dodge driven by Ken Schrader – was in violation of Section 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and Section 20-17.2C (anti-submarine belt – expired manufacturer’s date) in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book. The infraction was discovered by NASCAR officials during last Friday’s initial inspection process.(NASCAR PR)(6-23-2004)
  • Harvick and Kenseth dropped in final finishing order UPDATE and fined $25k: after meeting with #17-Matt Kenseth and #29-Kevin Harvick for their beating and banging and spinning each other out, NASCAR moved both to the tail end of the lead lap. So Kenseth goes to 21st and Harvick goes to 20th. Unofficial results already had Kenseth in 21st due to his pitstop, Harvick drops from 10th to 20th but maintains 9th in the driver points standings.(Speed Channel’s Speed News coverage)(6-13-2004)
    AND the official results are now posted at the Pocono Race Results/Awards page.(6-14-2004)
    AND II Matt Kenseth and Kevin Harvick were penalized for bumping each other at the end of the Pocono 500. With Sunday’s race about to end under caution, Harvick spun Kenseth into the infield in Turn 3 on Lap 197. Kenseth then did the same to Harvick on the backstretch on the next lap. Both Kenseth, the 2003 series champion, and Harvick were interviewed after the race by NASCAR officials, who then dropped them to 20th and 21st. Harvick originally finished 11th, and Kenseth had finished 10th. More penalties could be coming later this week, NASCAR president Mike Helton said. “It boils down to a frustration level between the 17 [Kenseth] and the 29 [Harvick] that got played out on the race track, under caution, and that’s something we frown on … greatly,” Helton said.(CNNSI/AP)(6-15-2004)
    UPDATE – Kenseth and Harvick fined: Kevin Harvick and Matt Kenseth were each fined $25,000 by NASCAR and placed on probation until Aug. 11 for bumping incidents between the two during the final laps of Sunday’s Pocono 500 at Pocono Raceway. Harvick, driver of the #29 GM Goodwrench Chevy, and Kenseth, driver of the #17 DeWalt Ford, took part in bumping and spinning out each other during the final caution period of the race, which extended from Lap 197 to 200. Both drivers were penalized for involvement in an altercation with another competitor during a caution period. The rift began 11 laps from the finish when Harvick passed Kenseth coming out of Turn 1 and cut in front of Kenseth’s car. Kenseth then used the front of his car to lift Harvick’s rear wheels and passed him again as the final caution came out. While the race was under caution, Harvick spun Kenseth into the infield in Turn 3 on lap 197. At the time, no penalties were assessed or drivers or crew chiefs called to the NASCAR hauler. Kenseth then returned the favor on the backstretch on the following lap, after which NASCAR called both drivers and crew chiefs to the hauler after the race.(ThatsRacin.com)(6-16-2004)
  • Crew Chief’s penalized: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series crew chiefs Todd Parrott and Jeff Buckner were each fined $500 for driver restraint equipment infractions that occurred during this past weekend’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup event at Dover (Del.) International Speedway, NASCAR officials announced today. Parrott was in violation of Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) for having the #38 M&M’s Ford of driver Elliott Sadler with shoulder harness belts that had an expired manufacturer date. Buckner also was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) for having the #02 Chevrolet of driver Hermie Sadler with an anti-submarine belt that had an expired manufacturer date. The infractions were discovered by NASCAR officials during Friday’s opening-day inspection.(NASCAR PR)(6-9-2004)
  • Crew Chiefs Fined: NASCAR today announced fines for three Nextel Cup crew chiefs for rules violations at Talladega. Ted Brown, crew chief of Shepherd Racing’s #89 Dodge for Morgan Shepherd, was fined $2,000 because crew member Scott Cianci entered the car servicing area without a helmet during the Aaron’s 499. Mike Ford, crew chief of Robert Yates Racing’s #88 Ford for Dale Jarrett, and Terry Wooten, crew chief of Michael Waltrip Racing’s #00 Chevrolet for Kenny Wallace, were fined $1,000 each for unapproved underpans found on their cars during pre-qualifying inspection.(NASCAR Scene Daily Newsletter)(5-5-2004)
  • Ganassi Racing and Foyt Racing penalized points for confiscated cars UPDATE Sabates not happy: Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates and A.J. Foyt Racing were issued multiple penalties as a result of NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series cars from those teams being confiscated March 26 during pre-event inspection at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. The #42 Texaco Havoline Dodge entry of Chip Ganassi with Felix Sabates for driver Jamie McMurray was confiscated for a rear window opening that exceeded the diagonal specification and was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book.
    As a result, owner Chip Ganassi was penalized with a loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series championship car owner points; McMurray with a loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series championship driver points; and crew chief Donnie Wingo was placed on probation until Dec. 31.
    The #14 Dodge entry of A.J. Foyt Racing for driver Larry Foyt was confiscated for a non-approved roof that did not fit the car templates and was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book. Owner A.J. Foyt was penalized with a loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series championship car owner points; Larry Foyt with a loss of 25 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series championship driver points; and crew chief Keith Koppenal was placed on probation until Dec. 31.
    Both cars have been held at the NASCAR Research and Development Center since they were confiscated. NASCAR will release the chassis and engines to the teams this week, but the #42 car body and #14 greenhouse will be retained at the center and not returned to the teams.
    “The process of gathering data from the two cars we confiscated has been completed,” NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Director John Darby said. “In addition to collecting the data we needed, we have been able to refine the overall process so that we have the ability to react very quickly to this type of situation in the future, specifically if this should occur in the final 10 races.”
    McMurray’s championship points total will be adjusted to 939 points as a result of the penalty and will drop from 13th to 14th in the championship standings. Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates also will be adjusted to 939 points with the 25-point penalty and fall to 14th in the owners’ championship standings.
    Foyt’s championship points total will be adjusted to 194 points as a result of the penalty, and will drop him from 40th to 44th in the championship standings. A.J. Foyt Racing also will be adjusted to 194 points with the 25-point penalty and drop to 46th in the owners’ championship standings.(NASCAR PR)(4-20-2004)
    UPDATE: Chip Ganassi Racing part-owner Felix Sabates lashed out at NASCAR Tuesday for stripping 25 driver points from Jamie McMurray as a result of his car being confiscated March 26 during the race weekend at Bristol. The violation was similar to those of the teams of Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch last season, which resulted in NASCAR confiscating both of those cars. Stewart did not have any points taken. Busch did. However, it was the only Cup race Busch entered in 2003, making the penalty virtually meaningless. “This is pure, unadulterated (BS),” Sabates fumed. “You have got to be consistent in this sport. NASCAR is not too consistent right now. “(Joe) Gibbs (Stewart’s owner) didn’t get any points taken from him when this happened to Tony last year and Tony was in the hunt for a championship.” Sabates said he and primary owner Chip Ganassi asked for an explanation of the penalty from NASCAR President Mike Helton but didn’t receive a satisfactory response. “The only sorry excuse they had was that they took points from Kyle Busch. Well, big (expletive deleted) deal. He was running one race and the penalty came out after the damn season was over,” Sabates said. “We are in the middle of a championship battle with an even greater priority this season with the 26-race deal and we lose points for the same violation as someone else and they didn’t lose points. That is (BS).” Sabates was also livid at the slow response time of the penalty, which came three weeks since the cars were taken. “They told us that day what was wrong. What the hell have they been doing?” he said. “This is just sorry— management, sorry management.”(ThatsRacin.com)(4-21-2004)
  • Brewer Penalized UPDATE appeal denied: NASCAR has fined Tim Brewer, crew chief for the #4 Chevrolet driven by Kevin Lepage, $5,000 for an infraction detected during NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series opening-day inspection at Darlington Raceway. Brewer was penalized under Section 12-4-A of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book: (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and Section 12-4-Q (Any determination by NASCAR Officials that parts and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules). The No. 4 had an unapproved rear deck lid.(NASCAR PR)(3-23-2004)
    UPDATE: On April 13, 2004, the National Stock Car Racing Commission heard and considered the Appeal of Timothy Brewer. The Appeal concerned a $5,000 fine issued by NASCAR under Section 12-4-A; “actions detrimental to stock car racing” and Section 12-4-Q; “any determination by NASCAR Officials that Parts and/or equipment used in the Event do not conform to NASCAR rules: non-approved rear deck lid – did not fit templates.” The penalty pertained to the No. 4 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series car at Darlington Raceway on March 19, 2004. The violation was clear and failure of the deck lid to conform to the template was not disputed by the Appellant. The penalty was consistent with penalties for similar NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series rear deck lid violations. It is therefore the unanimous decision of the National Stock Car Racing Commission to uphold the original penalty issued by NASCAR. The Appellant has the right under Section 15 of the Rule Book to appeal this decision to the National Stock Car Racing Commissioner.(NASCAR PR)(4-14-2004)
  • #14 Crew Chief Fined: Keith Koppenal, crew chief for the #14 Dodge driven by Larry Foyt in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series, has been fined $1,000 for a rule infraction that occurred this past weekend at Texas Motor Speedway, NASCAR officials announced today. Koppenal was found in violation of Section 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and Section 12-4-U (any violation of the fuel cell or fuel cell container specifications) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book, because of an oversized container. The violation was found during the weekend’s initial inspection process, on April 2.(NASCAR PR)(4-7-2004)
  • Dale Jr. causes caution UPDATE 3 Penalized, docked points and a statement: #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. admitted repeatedly after Sunday’s race he spun out on purpose on Lap 431 of 500 to prevent from having to pit under green and lose one or more laps. “I had a loose wheel and I didn’t have any choice but to spin the car out to get a caution. So I went down in the corner, had some clear room behind me, and I just spun it out,” Earnhardt Jr. said after the race. The caution came out, I put the clutch in and got going. What the hell else was I supposed to do? Go a lap down? Go two laps down?” Earnhardt Jr. also engaged in a profanity-laced exchange with his crew over his radio regarding NASCAR’s decision to extend cautions late in the race to blow debris from the track. That earned Earnhardt Jr. a trip to the NASCAR hauler. His admission of intentionally causing a caution – an act which has been penalized previously by NASCAR – did not seem to raise the ire of series director John Darby. ” ‘I spun a car out’ – that’s a great excuse for spinning a car out, but proving that is another story,” Darby said. “To brag about it is not enough for me to make a move on it.”(ThatsRacin.com)(3-29-2004)
    UPDATE: NASCAR is reviewing the post-race comments made by Dale Earnhardt Jr. in which he admitted intentionally spinning out to cause a caution, NASCAR spokesman Mike Zizzo said Tuesday. “This issue is still being looked at,” Zizzo said. Following Sunday’s Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway, Earnhardt Jr. admitted repeatedly he spun out on purpose on Lap 431 of 500 to prevent from having to pit under green and lose one or more laps. In the 2002 Winston all-star race, Kurt Busch admitted after the race he intentionally spun driver Robby Gordon to bring out a caution. Later in the week, NASCAR fined him $10,000 for intentionally wrecking another competitor. Sunday, Nextel Cup series director John Darby said initially he didn’t think Earnhardt Jr. deserved a penalty. However, on Tuesday Zizzo said Darby had heard only Earnhardt Jr.’s comments over his two-way radio after the race, not any comments Earnhardt Jr. made to the media. NASCAR should reach a decision on Earnhardt Jr. by Wednesday.(Kansas City Star)(3-30-2004)
    UPDATE 2: Section 12-4 (N) in the NASCAR Nextel Cup rulebook prohibits such action and lists what type of action is to be taken. It also states Earnhardt could be fined, lose championship points and lose his finishing position in the race.(Roanoke Times)(3-31-2004)
    Dale Jr. penalized #10G’s and docked 25 points: Driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. was penalized with a loss of 25 championship driver points, a $10,000 fine and probation until June 1 for his actions during Sunday’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, NASCAR officials announced today. The penalty also will extend to the team as Dale Earnhardt Inc. will lose 25 championship owner points for the actions of its driver. Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #8 Busweiser Chevrolet, was penalized for intentionally causing a caution condition during the race and as a result was in violation of Section 12-4-A (Actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 12-4-N (Any driver who, in the judgment of NASCAR officials, intentionally causes or attempts to cause a caution condition by stopping or spinning out or any other action) of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Rule Book.
    “The driver of the No. 8 car was quite vocal in admitting he intentionally spun out his car to cause a caution condition on the track, which is clearly prohibited in the NASCAR Rule Book,” NASCAR President Mike Helton said. ” We have several rules in our Rule Book that have been in place for quite some time to prevent someone from altering the outcome of an event. This was a clear-cut case of that. Actions such as this will not be tolerated. We will always react to protect the integrity of our sport.” Earnhardt Jr.’s championship points total will be adjusted to 832 points as a result of the penalty, but he will still maintain third in the championship standings. DEI also will be adjusted to 832 points with the 25-point penalty and remain third in the owners’ championship standings.(NASCAR PR)
    STATEMENT: TERESA EARNHARDT COMMENTS ON NASCAR PENALTY:
    Teresa Earnhardt, Owner of the #8 Budweiser Chevrolet driven by Dale Earnhardt Jr. in NASCAR Nextel Cup competition, commented today on the penalty levied against the team by NASCAR following Sunday’s Sharpie 500 in Bristol, TN. The fine, assessed for a late race spin, cost the Dale Earnhardt Incorporated team $10,000 and 25 owners and drivers championship points. “We regret what this has cost us in our pursuit of the Nextel Cup Championship. In the heat of battle, a lot of things can happen and decisions can be made that come at a high cost. It was a mistake we’ve all learned from and we have to move past it. Our goal is regaining the ground we’ve lost and continuing our focus on winning.”(DEI PR)(3-31-2004)
  • McMurray Fined $$ – no points: #42-Jamie McMurray was fined $10,000 and placed on probation until Aug. 31 by NASCAR on Tuesday for spinning #17-Matt Kenseth on the “cool down” lap following Sunday’s race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Kenseth and McMurray traded bumps in the closing laps and then McMurray spun Kenseth’s #17 DeWalt Ford on pit road after the race was completed. Kenseth and McMurray and their crew chiefs were called to the NASCAR hauler after the race.(ThatsRacin.com)(3-30-2004)
  • Daytona Penalties Doled Out: Crew chief Jimmy Fennig was fined $20,000 by NASCAR for weights improperly attached to a bar reinforcing the rear bumper on the #97 Ford entered for driver Kurt Busch for the Daytona 500. The fine against Fennig was the highest announced Saturday by NASCAR officials, who penalized a total of eight crew chiefs and two drivers for infractions at Daytona. NASCAR said it found pellets that were, in its judgment, added for the purpose of increasing the weight of the rear bumper cover on the #97 Sharpie Ford.
    Ken Francis, crew chef for the #91 Dodge Bill Elliott drove in the Bud Shootout, was fined $5,000 for a non-approved rear deck lid.
    Other penalties assessed were:
    $500 for Anthony Gibson, crew chief on the #1 Maxwell House/Post Chevy of John Andretti, for an unapproved air directional device and another $500 for a gap in the rear coil spring that did not meet specifications.
    $500 for Mike Hillman, crew chief for Derrike Cope’s #50 Dodge, for an air filter housing that had more than two holes drilled in the bottom.
    $500 for Greg Zipadelli, #20-Tony Stewart’s crew chief, and Ben Leslie, #21-Ricky Rudd’s crew chief, for using adjustable fender braces.
    $500 for Greg Steadman, crew chief for #45-Kyle Petty, and Gary Putnam, crew chief for #43-Jeff Green, for use of unapproved air directional devices.
    $500 for drivers #2-Rusty Wallace and #72-Kirk Shelmerdine for using head-and-neck restraint devices on which manufacturer’s dates had expired.(ThatsRacin.com)(2-21-2004)
  • Hendrick Motorsports Team Penalized: NASCAR officials announced today that car owner Rick Hendrick has been assessed a penalty of 25 car owner points, resulting from a rule violation involving Hendrick Motorsports’ #60 Chevrolet [which will be the #84 in 2004 – see story below] during the NASCAR Winston Cup Series season-finale weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The #60 was slated to be driven at Homestead by Kyle Busch. The car failed to pass the event’s initial inspection process on Nov. 13 and was confiscated by NASCAR, which led to the team not participating. The car was found to be in violation of Section 12-4-Q of the NASCAR Winston Cup Series Rule Book (parts and/or equipment used that do not conform to NASCAR rules). The #60’s rear-window opening exceeded the diagonal specification.(NASCAR PR)(12-17-2003)