Jamie Dick

NASCAR increases penalties for wheels and ballast falling off vehicles, mandates suspensions

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Citing safety, NASCAR announced Wednesday that crew chiefs and other key team members will receive a mandatory four-race suspension for a lost wheel or ballast falling off the car in each of the three national series.

NASCAR stated that a minimum four-race suspension would be given to a crew chief, tire changer and tire carrier for a lost wheel due to improper installation.

A crew chief, car chief and head engineer will receive a minimum four-race suspension for ballast falling off the car.

NASCAR stated in its update to the rule book: “NASCAR has categorized certain serious safety infractions that create a significant risk of injury or damage (e.g. separation of ballast weight or wheel(s) from the vehicle) under the P3 category. NASCAR considers such infractions to be very serious in nature and has therefore included pre-determined minimum Penalties to address the severity of such violations. NASCAR further reserves the right to escalate such safety related Penalties to higher Penalty levels when the infraction is considered to be more egregious in nature or displays a higher degree of negligent behavior.”

NASCAR has penalized a Sprint Cup and two Xfinity teams this season for weight falling off a car.

NASCAR penalized Premium Motorsports after weight fell off the No. 98 Sprint Cup car in July at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Crew chief Scott Eggleston was fined $25,000 and suspended for one race. Car chief Kevin Eagle also was suspended one race. Both were placed on probation through Dec. 31. Team owner Mike Curb was docked 15 points.

In the Xfinity Series, crew chief Gary Cogswell was fined $15,000 and placed on probation through Dec. 31 after ballast from Ross Chastain’s car fell off during practice in May at Iowa Speedway. The weight struck Jamie Dick’s car, hitting it in the hood and the windshield before striking his helmet. Dick was uninjured.

NASCAR suspended Xfinity crew chief John Monsam and car chief David Jones one race each after a weight fell off Peyton Sellers’ car in practice in May at Dover International Speedway, causing Carl Long to crash. NASCAR also fined Monsam $15,000 and placed him on probation through Dec. 31. Sellers was docked 15 points, and Victor Obaika was penalized 15 car owner points.

 

NASCAR Xfinity team Viva Motorsports ceasing operations

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Viva Motorsports announced Monday that it is ceasing operations and that its assets have been purchased, although the buyer was not identified.

Viva Motorsports had been in NASCAR since 2009 and was owned by Jamie Dick, who was sidelined earlier this season by diabetes. In his first event back, Dick was struck by a piece of debris at Iowa Speedway.

Jeffrey Earnhardt and Brandon Gdovic drove for the team in Xfinity races Dick did not compete. Earnhardt’s 12th-place finish at Bristol was the team’s best this season.

“It takes a tremendous level of commitment to compete at this level of auto racing, especially when striving to get better on limited resources, week in and week out,” Dick said in a statement. “It has come to a point where my family and I cannot continue to make the personal and financial commitments that this sport requires. I have always been proud of the quality of race team we brought to the track. Instead of lessening that quality, we decided to take a step back from the sport.”

“I want to thank the whole NASCAR community for allowing me to be part of the family. I want to thank our sponsors and our fans for all the support through the years. But most of all, I want to thank the employees of Viva Motorsports, both past and present, for making this team the best it could be.”

 

NASCAR penalizes 2 Xfinity teams, suspends crew chief and car chief for one team

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NASCAR has suspended crew chief John Monsam and car chief David Jones one race each after a weight fell off Peyton Sellers’ car last weekend at Dover and caused Carl Long to crash.

NASCAR announced Wednesday that Monsam also has been fined $15,000 and placed on probation through Dec. 31. Sellers loses 15 points. Owner Victor Obaika is docked 15 points for the P3 penalty.

NASCAR also announced crew chief Nick Harrison has been fined $7,500 and placed on probation through Dec 31 for the No. 33 Xfinity car being too low in the rear during postrace inspection at Dover. Richard Childress was docked 10 owner points.

Attached weight fell off Sellers’ car late in Friday’s Xfinity practice and Dover. Carl Long could not avoid it and stuck the weight, which damaged his radiator. Water flowed on to his tires, and Long lost control, shooting up the track into the wall. He also came down the track and hit the inside wall.

Monsam told NASCAR Talk after the incident: “I cannot apologize enough. An error on our part. There’s no excuse for it. All we can be right now is very grateful that Carl did not get hurt. Mistakes happen. Nobody’s perfect. I think it’s just a coincidence that it happened a couple of weeks ago to someone else. All I can say is I will take every step to make sure we’re right with Carl and it will never happen again.”

The incident was the second time in the last month that weight had fallen off a car and been struck. Weight from Ross Chastain’s JD Motorsports car struck Jamie Dick’s car and his helmet last month at Iowa Speedway. NASCAR fined Chastain’s crew chief, Gary Cogswell, $15,000 and placed him on probation through Dec. 31 for the P3 penalty.

 

Chris Buescher wins Dover Xfinity race by nearly 12 seconds; Regan Smith takes $100,000 Dash 4 Cash prize

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With virtually every driver in fuel conservation mood, Chris Buescher had just enough gas in his tank to not only win — but also by nearly 12 seconds — in Saturday’s Buckle Up 200 Presented By Click It Or Ticket at Dover International Speedway.

Buescher won by running an unheard of 98 laps on the final tank of fuel to earn his second Xfinity Series race of the season (also won at Iowa three weeks ago) and third of his career. Matt Kenseth finished second.

Buescher had actually held more than a 16-second lead with two laps to go, but backed off to save the last few remaining drops of fuel he had in his tank, assuring that he’d make it to the finish line.

“I can’t believe how slow we were having to run to do it,” Buescher told Fox TV. “It was just such a slow pace there at the end. We’re clutching it before the start-finish line and just letting it role. They’re just telling me to stay off the gas, stay off the gas, but we made it to the end and had enough for a burnout.”

Regan Smith was third and earned the first of four $100,000 Xfinity Dash For Cash prizes. Austin Dillon finished fourth, followed by Kasey Kahne, Chase Elliott, Brendan Gaughan, Ty Dillon, Erik Jones and Jeremy Clements.

MORE: Results of Buckle Up 200 Xfinity Series race at Dover

MORE: With Dover win, Buscher increases Xfinity Series points lead

How Buescher won: Buescher did a magnificent job of saving fuel, going the final 98 laps on one tank of fuel. He did his job in textbook fashion, by saving fuel along the way and then moving to the point for the first time with 10 laps to go, passing teammate Bubba Wallace Jr., while his fellow competitors had to slow down and save fuel themselves. It was Buescher’s second win in three races and allowed him to open up a 15-point edge in the points standings, the largest the spread has been this season.

Who else had a good day: Even though he finished third, Regan Smith had a very rewarding day – to the tune of $100,000 – by having the highest finish in the first of four Xfinity Dash 4 Cash events this season. “That certainly takes the sting away from that third. I don’t know how the 60 car (Buescher) made it all the way (to the finish). I don’t know how they did that. … We’ll take some of Xfinity’s money as a consolation prize, that’s okay, we’re always happy about that. We’re going to keep fighting hard. I want to win so freakin’ bad right now, it’s about to kill me, so we’ll keep battling.” Smith also moved up one spot, from fifth to fourth, in the Xfinity points standings with his third-place finish.

Who had a bad day: Brian Scott was hoping to repeat his win at Dover from six years ago (in the Truck Series). But on Lap 64, Scott and Ryan Blaney tangled, sending both drivers into the wall. As Scott’s crumpled car rolled down the track, Jamie Dick was unable to avoid it and slammed hard into Scott. While Blaney was able to continue on, Scott’s and Dick’s day were both over. “The 22 was kinda out of control,” Scott said of Blaney to Fox TV. “He got real loose out of (Turn) 4, so I got a run on his inside going into Turn 1. I just felt he didn’t give me any room, I feel like he was stuck to my door and it caused me to spin around.”

Notable: Erik Jones led a race-high 70 laps, and was hoping to celebrate his 19th birthday with a win. But a costly mistake coming onto pit road on the final pit stop cost him what had been a 20-second lead and ultimately relegated him to a ninth-place finish. “I just missed it, I screwed up, just trying a little too hard,” Jones told Fox TV. “I wanted to make sure we could get out ahead of everybody. Clean air was so big today. I thought that’s what we needed. It’s just tough to get on pit road here. I should have practiced it. I didn’t think about it during the day. We fought hard all day and put ourselves in position to have a shot and led a lot of laps, but it didn’t work out at the end.” … In post-race inspection, the 33 car of fourth-place finisher Austin Dillon was found to be too low. Any penalties will likely be issued this Tuesday or Wednesday.

Quote of the day, Part 1: “It’s my teammate so I can’t really say much. … He ran over me and winds up winning. It should be interesting Monday morning (in team meetings). We just got run over. It sucks that it was my teammate. … I would say I’m happy Roush won, but I’m not.” – Darrell Wallace Jr. on how he and teammate James Buescher got into each other late in the race, allowing Buescher to go on and win.

Quote of the day, Part 2: “Bubba and I were on the same (pit) strategy and we were able to run a quicker pace, still. I couldn’t do anything with him at the end of the straightaway. It is what it is. We got a win. It’s hard when somebody runs you down that close. I don’t know. It was a fun day, Ford did a great job. … It was quite the day for us.” – James Buescher responding to Bubba Wallace’s comments.

What’s next: The Xfinity Series enjoys an off-weekend next week. It returns to action on June 13 at Michigan International Speedway in the Great Clips 250 Benefitting Paralyzed Veterans.

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Crew chief after Xfinity incident: ‘I cannot apologize enough. There’s no excuse for it.’

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DOVER, Del. – Crew chief John Monsam could not do enough after tungsten fell off his car and struck Carl Long’s car causing Long to wreck Friday at Dover International Speedway – the second time in the last month weight has fallen off an Xfinity car.

The weight fell off Peyton Sellers’ car Friday morning during Xfinity practice. Long’s car ran over it, destroying the radiator. Water gushed on to Long’s front tires and he had no control, sliding up into the Turn 4 wall. After hitting, the throttle hung until he hit the inside wall.

Long was uninjured and working with his crew to prepare his backup car.

“I cannot apologize enough,’’ Monsam said after delivering four shocks to Long and his crew as they took parts from the primary car to put on the backup car. “An error on our part. There’s no excuse for it. All we can be right now is very grateful that Carl did not get hurt. Mistakes happen. Nobody’s perfect. I think it’s just a coincidence that it happened a couple of weeks ago to someone else. All I can say is I will take every step to make sure we’re right with Carl and it will never happen again.’’

Long was appreciative of Monsam’s apology and help, but the incident put him behind.

“It just killed us,’’ Long said. “It’s the best race car that I’ve got. First time I got a chance to race in a long time. This wasn’t a start and park.”

Long said he had no time to react on what he was planning to make his final lap in practice.

“I saw the dust as we entered the corner,” he said. “I saw a black speck but it was down on the ground.’’

Earlier this month, tungsten fell off the car of Ross Chastain’s car and struck Jamie Dick’s car and hit Dick in the helmet. Dick was uninjured.

NASCAR fined Chastain’s crew chief, Gary Cogswell $15,000 and placed him on probation through Dec. 31 for the P3 penalty.