NASCAR Notes: Teams Will Lose Wins If Cars Fail Inspection
In Daytona Beach, Godwin Kelly notes NASCAR’s competition department sent out a warning yesterday that if a winning car is "found illegal in post-race inspections, the driver and team will be disqualified and the win will go to the second-place driver." NASCAR Exec VP & Chief Racing Development Officer Steve O’Donnell said, "We are changing the culture." Kelly notes this is a "major move from the time-honored NASCAR tradition of allowing a driver to keep the win in the record book, even if they lost championship points, prize money and were slapped with monetary fines" (Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL, 2/5). FS1's Jeff Gordon said it is "definitely a move in the right direction" for NASCAR ("NASCAR Race Hub," FS1, 2/4).
CASH INCENTIVES: In Ft. Worth, Drew Davison writes NASCAR is "trying to liven up" the Gander Outdoors Truck Series with what it is calling the "Triple Truck Challenge." The series announced a new bonus program that will "award a bonus check for the winning drivers" at Texas Motor Speedway (June 7), Iowa Speedway (June 15) and Gateway Motorsports Park (June 22). Each race has a $50,000 bonus going to the winning driver. That amount "goes higher if a driver wins multiple races -- winning two of the three nets a driver $150,000 total, and winning all three would net a total of $500,000" (Ft. Worth STAR-TELEGRAM, 2/5).
I NEED A HERO: The AP's Jenna Fryer wrote the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series is in "need of a new face." It might be a job "best suited for Kyle Larson, considered by many the best hope to bridge the gap between grassroots racing and NASCAR -- and perhaps attract new fans to motorsports in a time of need." His style has "appealed to hardcore fans and his promise has piqued the interest of casual observers." Larson has "all the elements" to be the next Jeff Gordon or Tony Stewart (AP, 2/1).