Seriously?!? Both Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson were not allowed to participate in today’s activities at Infineon Raceway after failing inspection. This means neither gets to practice or qualify today, and both will start from the back in Sunday’s race (which is horrible, as it is extremely hard to pass at a road coarse).
Warning: What follows is Chris pissed and on his soapbox.
Come on guys, what the heck? Nascar has made it so clear, from the very beginning, that the punishments for messing with the Car of Tomorrow were going to be huge.
I mean, a couple of weeks ago, Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s crew chief was suspended for six races, fined $100k, and both Junior and his owner lost 100 points.
And Nascar started off the year with hefty punishments. They busted Michael Waltrip for something illegal in his fuel, docked him points, $100k, and kicked his crew chief and the Vice President of Michael Waltrip Racing out indefinitely (both have since been allowed back in the garage, after 12 missed races).
Nascar is making this seem as if it were a blatant violation, and Hendrick Motorsports is saying that they were working between two templates, so they thought there was wiggle room.
Honestly, this could be my guys cheating. This could be Nascar trying to crack down on the Hendrick Motorsports dominance this season. But whatever the reason, it will hurt Gordon and Johnson.
Both will most likely lose points and their crew chiefs, smack in the middle of the rough summer stretch.
But why push the limits this far? Chad Knaus, the crew chief for Johnson’s Lowe’s Chevrolet Impala SS, is the most watched crew chief during inspection. He always seems to find a way to do something against the rules, kinda like Ray Evernham (Gordon’s former crew chief, ironically).
EVERYONE in the garage watches the 48 Lowe’s car go through inspections. There is no leeway.
That’s it, they pushed the limits. They will have to learn the hard way.
Most likely, by affecting both their runs to win the Nascar Nextel Cup Championship.
PS- This also irks me, since last week the Lowe’s Chevy ran out of gas EIGHT laps from the finish of the race. How can you not see that happening? At Charlotte, Casey Mears’ crew (headed by a former member of the Lowe’s crew) calculated fuel so closely that he ran out of fuel just hundreds of yards after crossing the checkered flag, winning his first race and the Coca-Cola 600.
And my guys mess up by 8 laps on a two mile race track???