NASCAR rules updated following practice rounds at the Charlotte Roval
The Roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway is a new track for NASCAR. It’s also a completely new take on a road course.
The combination of those two things creates an adjustment period for the opening weekend. In practice and qualifying, we regularly saw drives cut the course due to mistakes and otherwise.
In addition, several cars have made heavy contact with the tire wall in turn 12. That’s a 3rd gear chicane at 140 mph.
Bubba Wallace is one of those drivers. Wallace jumped the curb and smashed the tire wall head on.
NASCAR has reacted to that situation by adjusting the rulebook in regards to course cutting. They’ve also updated the angle of tire wall for safety reasons…
Roval rules updated
NASCAR announcement on course cutting:
CONCORD, N.C. — Competition officials Saturday morning announced updates to the in-race penalty procedures for this weekend’s NASCAR events on the Charlotte Motor Speedway road course.
The updated race procedures specifically involve penalties for shortcuts at the 2.28-mile track’s two chicanes, marked as Turns 11-12 and Turns 15-17. The decision was reached after receiving feedback from teams and drivers after Friday’s on-track activity.
Both sections are outlined by curbing. The latter chicane, just beyond the pit entrance and the oval track’s Turn 4, is also defined by synthetic turf.
Should a driver cut the course in the Turn 11-12 chicane, the penalty would require drivers to come to a full stop in the restart zone alongside Turns 15-17. If a driver cuts the Turns 15-17 chicane, they would be required to stop on the apron off the racing surface before the start-finish line.
Teams would be assessed a pass-through penalty if drivers fail to serve their penalties by stopping in the designated areas. Pass-through penalties would also be issued if, in NASCAR’s discretion, drivers intentionally cut the chicanes.
NASCAR will also use its discretion to determine whether drivers should be penalized for missing either chicane if they are attempting to avoid an accident. In that case, NASCAR officials would forgo penalties and re-order the lineup based on running position before the evasive action.
In the previously outlined procedures, officials were to either issue a pass-through penalty on pit road or assess a 30-second time infraction if the penalty was unable to be served during the race distance. The 30-second penalty still applies to violations under the new procedures.
The updated procedures will be in place for Saturday’s Drive for the Cure 200 (3 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM) for the NASCAR Xfinity Series and Sunday’s inaugural Bank of America Roval 400 (2 p.m. ET, NBC, PRN, SiriusXM) in the Monster Energy Series.
Competition and track officials also applied rubber to two areas of the track before Saturday’s on-track activity. The “Tire Dragon” machine, designed to enhance grip by dragging used tires onto the racing surface, was used in Turns 3-4 and 5-6 after Friday’s Busch Pole Qualifying and before Saturday’s Monster Energy Series practice.
Turn 12 tire wall updated
NASCAR released a second announcement regarding the update to the tire wall in turn 12:
NASCAR angled the Turn 12 tire wall before final Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice at the Charlotte road course. The rumble strips remained.
The move was an effort to provide more room for drivers exiting the backstretch chicane. Erik Jones and Bubba Wallace hit the spot hard Saturday in second practice, sustaining significant damage to their cars. Both drivers were forced to go to backup cars for Sunday’s Bank of America Roval 400 (2 p.m. ET, NBC/NBC Sports App, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
NASCAR will watch the effects of the move during Saturday’s final practice (1:30 p.m. ET CNBC/NBC Sports App) to determine the final positioning for Sunday’s race.
— NASCAR —
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