Hendrick Motorsports #88 has penalties and possibly a crew chief suspensions on the way after Darlington Raceway
Lug nuts. Dale Earnhardt Jr was found with two loose lug nuts following Darlington Raceway.
One loose lug results in a simple $10,000 fine. However, two loose lug nuts faces a slightly steeper penalty.
Two loose Lug Nuts Penalty: $20,000 fine and crew chief suspension
At this time, no penalties or suspensions have been announced. NASCAR will release the official penalty report on Tuesday or Wednesday of this week.
Earnhardt started the race in 22nd. He picked up several positions, finishing stage 1 in 13th. He followed that with a 14th place run in stage 2.
In the final stage Dale Jr stated 12th. He picked off one spot after the initial restart. Earnhardt began reporting a loose condition as the race went on.
The final 102 laps ran caution free and included a round of green flag pit stops. Earnhardt suffered a flat right rear tire in the race. He was forced to make an unscheduled pit stop in his final trip to pit road.
Dale Earnhardt Jr finished 22nd in the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.
Dale Earnhardt Jr Quotes
“We ran and ran and ran. We were going to stay out that last run. And my car was really terrible. I couldn’t figure out what was going on,” Dale Earnhardt Jr describes in his weekly rundown via Periscope.
“I had a little bit of a vibration but nothing terrible. But, the car was driving worse and worse and I was just getting slower and slower.”
“So, I was afraid it might be a loose wheel. But, I’ve learned since Kansas, not to assume every vibration is a loose wheel. So, I don’t even say the word ‘loose wheel’ anymore over the radio.”
“Ended up, it was the tire going flat. We rubbed the wall a little bit. Which hell, we rubbed the wall all day long at that race track. You know, I didn’t hit the wall hard. I just rubbed it a few times. I didn’t think anything of it, when it happened.”
“But the tire did rub the quarter panel and I guess it caused the right rear to do flat. We were gunna try to run to the end. We had made that decision as a team, not to come in and get tires, like a lot of guys were doing.”
I had to stop, I had to slow down. Cause I thought the rear end’s coming out of it or sumthin’.
-Dale Earnhardt Jr
“With that flat tire, here we come to pit road. We changed tires, we go back out and this things shakin’ like crazy. And it’s getting worse and worse. I ran a few laps right there with Jimmie. I had to stop, I had to slow down. Cause I thought the rear end’s coming out of it or sumthin’. Something’s broke on the car.”
“It was just shaking’ terribly. And it had been shaken’ the run before. At this point, I’m thinking’ it’s surely not a loose wheel. Cause, it wouldn’t vibrate, back to back. They wouldn’t get loose wheels, two stops in a row.”
“We kinda just cruised around, trying to keep the car from crashing.”
“We come down pit road and NASCAR seen the loose lug nuts on the right rear. And they park ya on the side so they can come over there and take pictures of it. The document it with photos. So, that’s why I got pulled over on pit road, by myself.”
“Here comes my team. I’m looking all under the car thinking I’m gunna find something’ broke on this thing. But, they saw them lug nuts loose. And that’s definitely why it was vibratin’ and shakin’ so bad at the end.”
“That is why we didn’t finish anywhere near 12th. We had a good night going.”
“I’m reading on twitter about Greg being suspended for a week. We’ll work through that. It doesn’t concern me about me. This team can handle that type of stuff. Greg can handle it, he’s a tough guy.”
“It happens,” Dale Earnhardt Jr concluded.
Author: Shane Walters