NASCAR increases penalties for wheels and ballast falling off vehicles, mandates suspensions
Citing safety, NASCAR announced Wednesday that crew chiefs and other key team members will receive a mandatory four-race suspension for a lost wheel or ballast falling off the car in each of the three national series.
NASCAR stated that a minimum four-race suspension would be given to a crew chief, tire changer and tire carrier for a lost wheel due to improper installation.
A crew chief, car chief and head engineer will receive a minimum four-race suspension for ballast falling off the car.
NASCAR stated in its update to the rule book: “NASCAR has categorized certain serious safety infractions that create a significant risk of injury or damage (e.g. separation of ballast weight or wheel(s) from the vehicle) under the P3 category. NASCAR considers such infractions to be very serious in nature and has therefore included pre-determined minimum Penalties to address the severity of such violations. NASCAR further reserves the right to escalate such safety related Penalties to higher Penalty levels when the infraction is considered to be more egregious in nature or displays a higher degree of negligent behavior.’'
NASCAR has penalized a Sprint Cup and two Xfinity teams this season for weight falling off a car.
NASCAR penalized Premium Motorsports after weight fell off the No. 98 Sprint Cup car in July at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Crew chief Scott Eggleston was fined $25,000 and suspended for one race. Car chief Kevin Eagle also was suspended one race. Both were placed on probation through Dec. 31. Team owner Mike Curb was docked 15 points.
In the Xfinity Series, crew chief Gary Cogswell was fined $15,000 and placed on probation through Dec. 31 after ballast from Ross Chastain’s car fell off during practice in May at Iowa Speedway. The weight struck Jamie Dick’s car, hitting it in the hood and the windshield before striking his helmet. Dick was uninjured.
NASCAR suspended Xfinity crew chief John Monsam and car chief David Jones one race each after a weight fell off Peyton Sellers’ car in practice in May at Dover International Speedway, causing Carl Long to crash. NASCAR also fined Monsam $15,000 and placed him on probation through Dec. 31. Sellers was docked 15 points, and Victor Obaika was penalized 15 car owner points.