Published on May 29th, 2008 | by Ron Ripple11
The Penalties are flying…
NASCAR handed down some stiff penalties to the Haas CNC team for altering the location of the upper mounting points on the rear wing of the No. 66 and No. 70 car this past Saturday. Supposedly the NASCAR officials got a tip from a garage “rat” claiming the team had done some modifications to their car that would better the aerodynamics. NASCAR immediately impounded both cars this past Saturday and took them to their secret research and development center located in Concord, NC. Once the infractions were confirmed by “the secret” research and development center, the Haas CNC team was then hit HARD with the penalties.
- No. 66 driver Scott Riggs penalized 150 Championship points
- No. 66 Crew Chief Bootie Barker fined $100,000 and suspended for 6 races
- No. 66 Car Chief Derrick Jennings also suspended for 6 races
- No. 70 Driver Johnny Sauter penalized 150 Championship points
- No. 70 Crew Chief Dave Skog fined $100,000 and suspended for 6 races
- No. 70 Car Chief Thomas Harris also suspended for 6 races
- No. 66 and No. 77 team owners Joe Custer and Margaret Haas each lost 150 owner point
Let’s just say the teams took a beating for doing a very stupid thing. Neither one of the cars were in the top 20 for the year and after watching the Coca-Cola 600 this past weekend, they still finished 26th and 35th in their back up cars. Both teams were sitting mid to back of the pack with the modifications, so you have to wonder who made the decision in the garage to make the change? Whomever that person was… they need to put a blind fold on and let everyone take a swing at him. The team owners (if they weren’t involved) need to think about their program and make some changes. Last time Haas CNC made the headlines was when rumors were going around about Tony Stewart and the possibility of him joining the team as an owner/driver after his contract comes up.
I always say that it’s better to have “bad press” than no press at all. But I don’t think this kind of bad press is doing anything for these guys. It’s only costing them money and making them look like a bunch of cheaters. I know teams always try and push the limit on modifying the cars and making changes that will benefit them, but when you cross the line, it officially becomes illegal. If I were Margaret Haas, I’d make these crew chiefs come over to my house and weed my front lawn… and I can guaranttee Margaret Haas has a large front yard.
What do you guys think about the penalties? You think maybe the crew chiefs had no clue they were breaking the rules or do you think they knew what they were doing and trying to get a competitive advantage over the rest of the feild?
On a side note: There were some small penalties handed out to three members of the #88 Nationwide Series team for getting into a brawl on Saturday after the #20 car intentionally gave the #88 car a love tap during one of the cautions on Saturday night’s race.