Crew members ejected ahead of the Daytona 500; Multiple failures
Today, NASCAR is set to drop the green flag on the 2020 season at Daytona International Speedway. It begins with the Daytona 500.
It’s a sold out crowd in Daytona Beach, Florida. There’s a lot on the line as it’s the highest paying NASCAR purse in the history of the sport.
500 miles of stock car racing will take place later this afternoon. The winner will likely receive a check over $2 million and surely lock their position into the 2020 playoffs.
Teams have spent a week setting their starting positions for today’s race. Last week, qualifying speed set the front two positions. Ricky Stenhouse Jr will start on pole with Alex Bowman to his outside.
The other positions were set via two duel races. Those races were won by Joey Logano and William Byron.
Since those races, teams have hit the 2.5-mile oval for two rounds of practice.
Today, NASCAR teams must roll through the inspection lines to make sure they are within the rule book ahead of the biggest race in NASCAR history.
The tolerances are very narrow. However, NASCAR allows a get out of jail free card. The first failure results in no penalty, team must go to the tail of the inspection line and try again.
Daytona 500 pre-race inspection failures
10+ cars have failed on their first attempt. Those include three Hendrick Motorsports machines.
So far, a few cars have failed twice.
No 11: Denny Hamlin is that machine. He elected to skip the final practice round, along with the rest of Joe Gibbs Racing.
Hamlin will start the Daytona 500 from the rear of the field. He’ll also see his car chief ejected.
The No. 11 team was able to pass inspection on their third attempt. A third failure would have required a pass through pit road penalty at the start of the race.
Hamlin is the defending winner of the event. He’ll be looking to repeat and he’ll be coming from the tail.
No 15: Brennan Poole also failed pre-race inspection twice. He’ll also start at the tail and see his car chief ejected from the speedway.
Poole was able to pass on his third attempt through the inspection line. He would have already started at the rear anyway as the team made an engine change.
Those are the only two cars that failed inspection two or more times.
This is not the first time we’ve seen inspection issues this week. Ahead of Daytona 500 qualifying, 38 cars failed on their first attempt.
However, in that situation, NASCAR admitted it was faulty equipment on their end. That made good on it be giving teams an extra chance to pass inspection before penalties get put in place.
In the NASCAR Xfinity Series, we saw an L2 penalty handed out. That was for modifications of the nose cone.
The penalty was 75 points, $50,000 and a 6-race suspension.
NASCAR Inspection Failure Rules: Pre-Race Inspection
1 NASCAR Inspection failure: No penalty, the team gets to go to the back of the inspection line and try again.
2 NASCAR inspection failure: If a team fails twice, NASCAR will eject a crew member of their choosing. In addition, they are forced to the start the race in the rear.
3 NASCAR inspection failures: If a team failed three times then they lose a crew member. They have to start at the rear. In addition, the car has to serve a pass through penalty on pit lane at the start of the race.
Note: This story will be updated is more Daytona International Speedway inspection failures occure.