Chip Ganassi Racing’s Chad Johnston has become the fourth Sprint Cup Series crew chief to be suspended in eight days. During post-race inspection following Kyle Larson’s eleventh-place finish on Monday at Pocono Raceway, it was discovered that all the lug nuts on his Number-42 Chevrolet were not properly tightened.
Johnston received a one-race suspension, was fined twenty thousand dollars and placed on NASCAR probation through December 31 st . On June 1 st, Cup Series crew chiefs Randall Burnett (who works with A-J Allmendinger), Tony Gibson (Kurt Busch) and Brian Pattie (Greg Biffle) were suspended for rule violations at Charlotte.
In addition to Johnston’s suspension, six Cup teams were given written warnings on Wednesday for a variety of inspection violations at Pocono. Drivers whose teams were warned are Aric Almirola, Matt DiBenedetto, Ty Dillon, Jamie McMurray, Danica Patrick and Regan Smith.
Three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series crew chiefs were fined and suspended with Brian Pattie getting hit the hardest with a two-race suspension and a $50,000 fine.
Pattie, crew chief for Greg Biffle and the No. 16 team, which was also assessed with the loss of 15 championship owner and 15 championship driver points, was issued a P3 penalty after violating sections 12-1; 20.4.1; 20.4.2 a,b,c; 18.104.22.168.1 c of the NASCAR Rule Book – illegal body measurements.
With the penalty, Biffle drops from 23rd to 24th in the standings.
Randall Burnett (crew chief for AJ Allmendinger) and Tony Gibson (crew chief for Kurt Busch) were each suspended one race (P3) and fined $20,000 after violating 10.11.3.4 a of the Rule Book, which states: “All tires, and wheels, and all five lug nuts must be installed in a safe and secure manner at all times during the Event.”
All three crew chiefs were placed on NASCAR probation through Dec. 31, including Tony Stewart’s crew chief Mike Bugarewicz after he was issued a P2 penalty for violating sections 20.4 b; 20. 4.2 a; 12.1; 22.214.171.124.2 d of the Rule Book in pre-race inspection – body design and surface conformance.
NASCAR also issued written warnings in Wednesday’s Penalty Report to the team’s of Paul Menard, Matt Kenseth, Aric Almirola, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Menard will lose 15 minutes of practice time at Pocono Raceway after the team failed template inspection three times in pre-qualifying.
Cole Pearn, Sprint Cup Series crew chief on Martin Truex Jr.’s Number 78 Furniture Row Racing team, has been suspended for one race and fined fifty thousand dollars for an unspecified pre-race inspection violation last weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway. The team has been docked fifteen championship owner and driver points. Joe Garone, president of Furniture Row Racing, said in a statement that the team will appeal Wednesday’s penalties. Pearn’s one-race suspension and his fine will be deferred until the conclusion of the appeal process.
Randall Burnett, Sprint Cup Series crew chief on A-J Allmendinger’s Number-47 JTG Daugherty Racing team, was fined fifteen thousand dollars for a pre-qualifying inspection violation. The team has been docked ten championship owner and driver points … Similar penalties were also assessed to crew chiefs for the teams of Austin Dillon, Paul Menard, Ryan Newman and Michael McDowell … A total of eighteen teams across all three of NASCAR’s top national series were assessed penalties or given written warnings for rule violations last weekend in Atlanta.