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Monster Energy NASCAR Cup

Three Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Car Chiefs Suspended

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Following the AAA 400 Drive for Autism at Dover International Speedway, three Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series crew chiefs have been suspended.

The No. 19 Toyota of Daniel Suarez and the No. 14 Ford of Clint Bowyer were both found in violation of rule book, in relation to the rear window support and structures.

For Suarez, his Joe Gibbs Racing team broke sections 20.4.h Body and 20.4.8.1.c Rear Window Support and Structure of the NASCAR Rulebook with not having the rear window flush to the deck lid. For Bowyer, his Stewart-Haas Racing team violated Section 20.4.8.1 Rear Window Support and Structure b. & c which states the “rear window support braces must keep the rear window glass rigid in all directions at all times.”

As a result, their respective crew chiefs Scott Graves (No. 19) and Mike Bugarewicz (No. 14) were fined $50,000, with the car chiefs (Todd Brewer for No. 19, Jerry Cook for No. 14) suspended for the next Cup Series points eligible events. With the Monster Energy All-Star race falling in the middle, both car chiefs are eligible to attend that event. Additionally, both drivers and teams lost 20 regular season driver and owner points. 

“We had a minor part failure due to the heavy loads and track conditions experienced at Dover,” Stewart-Haas Racing’s Greg Zippidelli released in a statement. “It had no competitive impact, and our racecar fit all the templates and passed all the inspections throughout the race weekend, including pre- and post-race.”

This marks the third and fourth penalty in relation to rear window violations, following Kevin Harvick after the Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, and Chase Elliott‘s O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Texas Motor Speedway violation. Both teams saw the same penalties as listed above, except Elliott’s crew chief was suspended rather than car chief due to being the team’s second L1 penalty. 

The No. 3 Chevrolet of Austin Dillon was found in violation of Section 20.4.3.a&.d of the rulebook due to the splitter not meeting specifications. As a result, crew chief Justin Alexander was fined $25,000, with car chief Greg Ebert suspended for the next Cup points event. 

Lastly, the No. 41 Ford of Kurt Busch had lug nuts not properly installed, resulting in a $10,000 fine for crew chief Billy Scott.

EMAIL ASHLEY AT ashley.mccubbin@popularspeed.com

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Ashley McCubbin

Currently the Executive Editor for Popular Speed, Ashley McCubbin also runs Short Track Musings, while handling media relations for OSCAAR. Currently living in Bradford, Ontario, she spends her weekend at the local short tracks in the area taking photos.