Penalties: L-bracket obstructs roof flap on Truex Jr. car, two SHR cars busted

Jerry Jordan Photo

By Jerry Jordan — DAYTONA BEACH, Fl. – The Sprint Cup cars of Kevin Harvick (No. 4) and Brian Vickers (No. 14) had their times disallowed for a track bar violation following qualifying for the 2016 Daytona 500, on Sunday, and Martin Truex Jr. wasn’t allowed on the track after NASCAR found issues with the cars roof flap. But fans shouldn’t expect any announcement regarding penalties until after the Great American Race.

“At the present time, we do not expect to announce any penalties prior to the race,” said a NASCAR spokesperson.

For the No. 78 car, NASCAR saw something that it didn’t like as the car was being pushed down pit road. A source said the official pushed down on the rood flap – thinking it might be stuck open – but met resistance and it would not seat properly. The official sent the car back to the inspection bay and put Truex Jr. on the five-minute clock.

When the car arrived at the NASCAR templates, officials immediately impounded it, locking it behind a chain-link fence until team representatives arrived and spoke to Sprint Cup Series Director, Richard Buck.

The source said that the main issue NASCAR found with the No. 78 car was the roof flap, which are designed to deploy and keep the car from going airborne if it spins around backwards, was obstructed by an improperly-installed L-bracket. Not having the roof flap closed during the qualifying run would have helped the car gain down force and given the team a speed advantage, the source said.

Buck was observed taking photos of the roof flap opening where the L-bracket was located and even had a member of the Furniture Row team bring a drill over to the inspection bay to work on the car. After repairs were made and photos were taken, the car was released from NASCAR’s custody and pushed back to the No. 78’s garage stall.

A representative from Furniture Row declined to comment about the information.

The problems with the No. 4 and No. 14 Stewart-Haas car were found after the two cars had already turned qualifying laps on the track. It is unclear, at the present time, what was wrong with the track bars.

With their times disallowed, the three drivers will start at the back of the field for the Can-Am Duels at Daytona Thursday afternoon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *