UPDATE (11 p.m. ET): NASCAR announced late Saturday night that it has handed down four-race suspensions to three members of Chase Briscoe‘s Xfinity Series team: crew chief Richard Boswell, car chief Nick Hutchins and engineer DJ Vanderley, starting with Sunday’s Xfinity Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
The suspensions stem from ballast that came loose from Briscoe’s No. 98 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford and fell on the race track surface during parade laps prior to Saturday afternoon’s race, the first of an Xfinity Series weekend doubleheader.
The safety violation, per the NASCAR Rule Book, is section 220.127.116.11.4.d. (Loss or separation of added ballast from the vehicle will result in a four Race suspension of the crew chief, car chief, and head engineer.)
In addition to missing Sunday’s race, the trio will also miss upcoming Xfinity races at Talladega, Pocono and Indianapolis. They are eligible to return at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday, July 9.
NASCAR Xfinity Series points leader Chase Briscoe got off to a rough start in Saturday’s race at Homestead-Miami Speedway even before the green flag fell.
At least one piece of ballast fell off Briscoe’s car during the pace laps.
NASCAR called Briscoe’s No. 98 to pit road where his team made repairs.
He returned to the race six laps down.
Per Section 18.104.22.168.4.d of the NASCAR Rule Book, here is the penalty for ballast coming out of a car/truck: “Loss or separation of added ballast from the vehicle will result in a four Race suspension of the crew chief, car chief, and head engineer. If NASCAR cannot identify which series or vehicle the lost ballast originated from, all vehicles entered for that Event from and associated with the team organization identified on the lost ballast may receive the suspensions.”
NASCAR will double-check the piece after the race before assessing the penalty. The Xfinity Series races again Sunday at the track.
Briscoe managed to come back and make up all six laps, finishing seventh.
Prior to the Coca-Cola 600 last month, Denny Hamlin had pieces of ballast fall off his car before the race, resulting in four-race suspensions to three members of his team, including crew chief Chris Gabehart. Wednesday’s race at Martinsville marked the last event in the four-race suspension for Gabehart and the crew members, meaning all are eligible to return for Sunday’s Cup race in Miami.