NASCAR has disallowed the qualifying times of Stewart-Haas Racing’s (SHR) No. 4 driven by Kevin Harvick and No. 14 piloted by Brian Vickers at the Daytona 500 after both cars were found to have non-compliant track bars by race officials.
Harvick had posted the 14th fastest lap, while Vickers –filling in for Tony Stewart who is recovering from a broken vertebra – was 21st fastest before their qualifying times were disallowed. SHR No. 4 crew chief Rodney Childers said on Twitter after the qualifying session that the violation “was a simple mistake on our part.” He also said the team had measured the track bar from a different spot than NASCAR officials, resulting in a quarter-inch discrepancy.
Meanwhile, Furniture Row Racing’s sole No. 78 Toyota Camry, piloted by Martin Truex Jr., got clamped down even before the qualifying session because of a non-compliant right roof flap. The team was unable to fix the issue within the five-minute window period, so the Toyota wasn’t allowed to qualify.
“They didn’t like the way it was landing when it went down,” crew chief Cole Pearn said to The Associated Press. “I don’t know, it was that way the whole way down pit road. It could have been easily fixed, but either way, they decided to put it on the five-minute clock when we were down there at the end. I don’t know why we had to run it back here because there was no way we were going to get back here and get back out in time.”
NASCAR officials said the issues with all three cars would be discussed further in competition meetings, which could result in further penalties meted out to the teams.