Justin Haley: ‘In my belief, I still won – unofficially’

4 Comments

NASCAR had dramatic finishes in back-to-back weeks at Chicagoland Speedway in Cup and Daytona International Speedway in the Xfinity series.

One will be part of the Cup highlight reels for decades. The other might be used by NASCAR to illustrate the yellow line rule.

Justin Haley’s last-lap pass on Kyle Larson and Elliott Sadler was deemed illegal when the left-side tires of his Chevrolet crossed over the double yellow line. Larson, who crossed the finish line behind Haley, was crowned the winner, but one week later Haley still thinks the trophy should be his.

“I did cross the start/finish line first, so in my belief, I still won – unofficially,” Haley said in Kentucky Speedway’s media center after posting the fastest lap in Thursday’s final truck practice for the Buckle Up in Your Truck 225.

On the final restart at Daytona, Haley pushed Justin Allgaier in the outside groove. Haley remained dedicated to the outside lane as Larson pushed Allgaier out of position. Exiting Turn 4 on the white flag lap, Haley was momentarily shuffled to fourth, but that gave him a clear space through traffic to the bottom groove. Like a Jack-in-the-Box, he popped out of the pack and shot past the leaders. – but his momentum carried him across the double yellow line and out of bounds on a restrictor-plate track.

“I don’t know when it sunk in. It’s just kind of how it went. I don’t get the opportunity to go over there in Xfinity much.”

More: Justin Haley says it was ‘BS call’ by NASCAR to nullify win 

In order to progress up NASCAR’s ladder system from the Camping World Truck Series, Haley was given three opportunities with GMS Racing in the Xfinity series. He finished 12th at Iowa Speedway and came within inches of winning Daytona. His last scheduled opportunity will come at Watkins Glen International.

“Those were kind of my three shots to make something happen and if I didn’t, I wasn’t going to go too far in my career. So, I had to make the most of it and I think I have to this point.”

Follow Dan Beaver on Twitter.

Truck practice report at Kentucky

Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images
Leave a comment

FINAL PRACTICE

Ben Rhodes bounded to the top of the speed chart in the final minutes of the final practice session with a lap of 182.834 mph.

He beat Grant Enfinger (181.873 mph) by .151 seconds – nearly a full mile per hour.

Chris Eggleston (181.622), Matt Crafton (181.232) and Brandon Jones (181.190) rounded out the top five.

Noah Gragson appeared to blow an engine during final practice, causing an extended delay for cleanup. NASCAR extended the session to noon (five minutes) as a result. He was fourth on the speed chart at the time with a speed of 180.977 mph. His speed eventually landed seventh on the chart.

Justin Haley – who was fastest in the first session – was unable to back up his speed and posted the 15th fastest lap (180.000) in final practice.

Johnny Sauter had the quickest 10 lap average of 179.411 mph.

Click here for the complete practice report.

FIRST PRACTICE

Haley posted the fastest single lap in the first practice session for the Buckle Up in Your Truck 225 at Kentucky Speedway with a speed of 182.076 mph.

He beat Stewart Friesen (181.788) by .047 seconds.

Myatt Snider (181.616), Brandon Jones (181.336) and Dalton Sargeant (180.947) rounded out the top five.

Gragson had the quickest 10 lap average of 180.112 mph

Justin Fontaine (176.840) posted the most laps with 33.

Click here for the complete practice report.

NASCAR addresses yellow line rule in Cup drivers meeting

Leave a comment

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – NASCAR responded to a question in the drivers meeting before Saturday night’s race about the double yellow line rule.

Justin Haley appeared to have won Friday night’s Xfinity race with a pass just before the finish line, but NASCAR ruled that the left side of Haley’s tires went below both yellow lines that separate the apron from the racing surface. NASCAR declared Kyle Larson the winner and put Haley 18th, the last car on the lead lap.

A rules video played in the drivers meeting stated: “Drivers, this is your warning. Race above the yellow line. If in NASCAR’s judgment you go below the yellow line to improve your position, you will be black-flagged. If, in NASCAR’s judgment, you force someone below to yellow line to prevent them passing you, you may be black-flagged.”

Ryan Newman was the lone driver to ask a question about the yellow line rule. He sought clarification on the rule and about a car’s position on the track, noting that Haley appeared to be ahead when his tires dipped below the yellow lines coming to the checkered flag.

Richard Buck, managing director of the Monster Energy Cup Series, responded to Newman’s query:

“It’s very clear on the video of going below the yellow to advance your position. That’s at any time.

“What is considered going below the double yellow lines? It’s your left-side, the inside of your left-side tires, when they go below the inside line, that’s when we get involved.”

The Cup Rule Book addresses the rule on the double yellow lines in section 10.8.3. It states:

10.8.3 SUPERSPEEDWAY EVENTS/ADDITIONAL IN-RACE VIOLATIONS
.a Vehicles must race above the double yellow lines around the entire race track. If in NASCAR’s judgement, the vehicle(s) goes beneath the double yellow lines to improve its position, vehicle(s) will be black-flagged. If in NASCAR’s judgement a vehicle forces another vehicle beneath the double yellow lines (in an effort to stop the advancement/pass) the vehicle may be black-flagged.
.b NASCAR defines beneath the double yellow lines as follows: when the vehicle’s left side tires are beneath the left line of the inside double yellow lines that separates the apron from the racing surface while passing another vehicle.

 and on Facebook

Justin Haley says it was ‘BS call’ by NASCAR to nullify win

9 Comments

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Justin Haley called it a “pretty BS call,” but NASCAR said he clearly violated the yellow line rule, and that’s why he was not declared the winner of Friday night’s Xfinity race at Daytona International Speedway.

Haley, in his second career Xfinity start, rocketed underneath Kyle Larson and Elliott Sadler to cross the finish line first and seemingly win.

However, Haley’s path caused his left-side tires to go below both yellow lines that separate the apron from the racing surface. NASCAR warned competitors in the drivers meeting before the race – as series officials do before every restrictor-plate race – not to go below the yellow lines to pass or they will be penalized.

NASCAR penalized Haley for the move. Instead of winning, he was dropped to the last car on the lead lap. He finished 18th. Larson was declared the winner.

Haley was unclear of the rule and expressed his frustration after the race.

“I just wish NASCAR would be a little more, tell us how much of the car we could have under the yellow line,” Haley said. 

Section 10.8.3.c of the Xfinity Rule book states: “NASCAR defines beneath the double yellow lines as follows: when the vehicle’s left-side tires are beneath the left line of the inside double yellow lines that separate the apron from the racing surface while passing another vehicle.”

Said Haley: “There’s room for me to go up, so I don’t know why they’re calling me like that.”

Wayne Auton, managing director of the Xfinity Series, said video showed that Haley violated the rule.

“The 24 car’s left sides were clearly inside the lines, so we had to make the call,” Auton said of Haley.

Auton was asked about Haley’s position on the track, and if he was leading at the time, thus his position would have already been advanced.

“The rule states if you advance your position,” Auton said. “He clearly advanced his position at that time. It doesn’t matter if his nose is an inch out front or a foot out front, he’s still clearly inside the inside lane, and it’s a violation of the rule.”

Said Sadler on the ruling:  “It’s a rule, and I’m glad to see NASCAR stay behind their rules on restrictor-plate racing, because if not, I think you’re going to see people take advantage of it. So I think they set a precedent again tonight making sure we all know we race above the yellow line. They tell us every single time restrictor-plate racing. A lot of times we get runs, especially down the backstretch here where it’s one of those things where you’ve got to put your lefts right on the line or over it, and you just can’t do it. Because you don’t want to put it in their hands.”

GMS Racing officials met with NASCAR after the race and remained displeased with the result. Spencer Gallagher, who will return to driving for the team next weekend at Kentucky, expressed his anger on Twitter:

Xfinity practice report at Daytona

Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images
Leave a comment

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. —  Only 10 cars were on track for the final Xfinity practice Thursday at Daytona International Speedway.

Chad Finchum posted the fastest lap at 185.567 mph. He was followed by Timmy Hill (185.540 mph), Jeremy Clements (184.896), Alex Labbe (183.135) and Ray Black Jr. (193.016).

There were no incidents in the session.

Click here for practice report.

First practice

Ryan Reed led opening Xfinity practice Friday at Daytona International Speedway with a lap of 196.143 mph. He was followed by Justin Haley (195.869 mph), Ryan Truex (195.831), Austin Cindric (195.520) and Shane Lee (195.312).

Chase Elliott, driving in the No. 23 car for Spencer Gallagher, was sixth on the speed chart with a top lap of 194.801 mph. NASCAR announced Wednesday that it has reinstated Gallagher after he completed the sanctioning body’s Road to Recover program. NASCAR indefinitely suspended Gallagher on May 2 for violating its Substance Abuse Policy .

There were no incidents in the session.

Click here for practice report

Christopher Bell ran the most laps in the session at 25. Tyler Reddick, who won at Daytona in February, was next with 23 laps run.