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Xfinity team owner fined for violating COVID-19 protocol at Kentucky

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NASCAR announced on Tuesday the first fine for a violation of its COVID-19 protocols.

Anthony Clements, owner of Jeremy Clements Racing, was fined $10,000 for violating section 12.8.1.b of the Member Conduct Guidelines and section 7.7.2.j Team Event Roster Guidelines in the rulebook.

Among the potential violations in Section 12.8.1.b is that a member can be fined $5,000-$25,000 for: “Failure to comply with NASCAR’s COVID-19 Event Protocol Guidelines and/or instructions from NASCAR including screenings, social distancing, compartmentalization, and use of required personal protective equipment, etc.”

Last week, NASCAR issued a memo to teams requesting them to address “complacency” regarding its COVID-19 mask policy.

Section 7.7.2.j says “If a team is not in compliance with the Team Event Roster Rules and guidelines, that team will be subject to a Penalty as outlined in Section 12 Violations and Disciplinary Action.”

NASCAR also issued a $5,000 fine to crew chief Dave Rogers for one unsecured lug nut on Riley Herbst‘s No. 18 Toyota.

NASCAR did not issue any penalties for Friday’s post-race fight between Noah Gragson and Harrison Burton.

Last Saturday, NASCAR announced L1 level penalties for three Truck Series teams that failed pre-race inspection.

Penalty report from Auto Club Speedway

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NASCAR has issued three fines to crew chiefs for having one unsecured lug nut on their cars during last weekend’s races at Auto Club Speedway.

There were two fines in the Cup Series. Randall Burnett, crew chief on Tyler Reddick‘s No. 8 Chevy, and Mike Shiplett, crew chief on Cole Custer‘s No. 41 Ford, were each fined $10,000.

In the Xfinity Series, Dave Rogers, crew chief on Riley Herbst‘s No. 18 Toyota, was fined $5,000.

There were no other penalties announced by NASCAR.

Joe Gibbs Racing announces Xfinity crew chief lineup for 2020

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Joe Gibbs Racing has announced its Xfinity Series crew chief lineup for the 2020 season, which will see full-time efforts by Brandon Jones, Harrison Burton and Riley Herbst.

Jeff Meendering will return for a second season working with Brandon Jones on the No. 19 Toyota.

Together the two earned Jones’ first career Xfinity Series win last month at Kansas Speedway.

“I’m having so much fun racing in the Xfinity Series right now and I’m really happy to have Jeff back next year,” Jones said in a press release. “We got our first win together this year and having Jeff and the team stay together on our No. 19 Toyota Supra allows us to build on that momentum. We are focused on finishing out this season strong and working hard to have a fast start to 2020 beginning in Daytona.”

For Burton, he will have Ben Beshore as his crew chief on the No. 20 Toyota.

Beshore served as crew chief on the No. 18 car this year in his first full-time season as a crew chief. He worked with Burton and six other drivers, including Herbst.

“I’m excited to get the 2020 season started and continue building on the relationship that I have with Ben (Beshore) and the entire group at JGR,” Burton said in a press release. “This year has really helped me and I’m ready to take the next step in my career with JGR and the No. 20 team.”

On the No. 18 Toyota, Herbst will be paired with Dave Rogers, who returns to a crew chief role after a tenure serving as JGR’s Xfinity Series technical director.

Rogers has 128 starts and 20 wins as a crew chief in the Xfinity Series since 2006. He has 277 starts and 18 wins as a Cup Series crew chief since 2005.

“I’m really going to lean on Dave Rogers next season to learn as much as I can,” Herbst said in a press release. “He’s had so much success over the years with a number of different drivers and to have a veteran like him will really help as I continue to learn each week on the track. I’m looking forward to continuing to get to know him and build our relationship as we prepare for Daytona and the 2020 season.”

Both Burton and Herbst will compete for Rookie of the Year honors.

“We’ve got a great line up for our Xfinity program for 2020 with Brandon really hitting his stride and both Riley and Harrison continuing to develop and grow their careers,” said Steve DeSouza, Executive Vice President of Xfinity Series and Development for Joe Gibbs Racing, in a press release. “I believe we have the right people in place with Jeff Meendering, Dave Rogers and Ben Beshore leading the 19, 18 and 20 teams. We look forward to each competing for race wins and ultimately a 2020 championship, along with Riley and Harrison contending for Rookie of the Year honors.”

Daniel Suarez gets new crew chief for final six races of season

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Crew chief Scott Graves is leaving Joe Gibbs Racing and will be replaced immediately by Dave Rogers, the team announced Tuesday.

Rogers has served as technical director for JGR’s Xfinity operation. He will be the crew chief for Daniel Suarez the rest of the season.

Rogers and Suarez worked together for five races in 2017, Suarez’s rookie year, before Rogers took a personal leave of absence. Graves had been Suarez’s crew chief since then.

Rogers has 18 career Cup wins while working with Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Carl Edwards at JGR.

Suarez was the only Joe Gibbs Racing driver not to make the Cup playoffs this season. He enters this weekend’s race at Talladega Superspeedway 18th in points.

Two Xfinity Series crew chiefs fined for lug nut violations at Kansas

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There were no penalties assessed to NASCAR Cup teams from Sunday’s race at Kansas Speedway.

However, NASCAR assessed monetary fines to two Xfinity Series crew chiefs for unsecured lug nut violations in last Saturday’s race at Kansas.

The No. 22 and No. 19 teams were penalized for violating: Sections 10.9.10.4: Tires and Wheels Note: Lug nut(s) not properly installed.

Greg Erwin, crew chief of the Team Penske No. 22 Ford of third-place finishing driver Ryan Blaney, was fined $5,000.

Also fined $5,000 was Dave Rogers, crew chief of the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota of eighth-place finisher Matt Tifft.