Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Johnson: NASCAR Erred In Withholding Loudon Yellow

Jimmie Johnson criticized NASCAR’s decision to delay throwing the caution flag when AJ Allmendinger spun on the final lap of Sunday’s Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

The yellow flag did not fly until the leaders were between Turns 3 and 4, and Johnson said yesterday that an unsafe situation resulted. “It should have been called a little bit earlier," he said. "On the last lap, when you take into consideration how fired up everybody is to get back to the start-finish line…that bit of hesitation in all the drivers' minds leads to an unsafe situation."

NASCAR officials say they delayed the call hoping that Allmendinger would be able to refire his car and allow the race to end under the green flag.

No Appeal For JGR: Joe Gibbs Racing has responded to the penalties levied aganst them by NASCAR after the left-front corner of Kyle Busch’s car was found to be too low in post-race inspection Sunday.

A JGR press release said the infraction stemmed from a dislodged left front spring that required the team to make major adjustments to the car's suspension during the race. The team said it accepts the penalty, and will not appeal.

Testing Restraints Loosened: NASCAR has announced its 2010 testing policy for the Sprint Cup, Nationwide, Camping World Truck and Camping World East and West Series; once again prohibiting testing at tracks that host any of those series.

However, testing will be allowed next season at NASCAR-sanctioned tracks that host regional touring races, but not national series events. Based on this year's schedules, testing would no be allowed at Greenville-Pickens, Tri-County, South Boston, Thompson, Music City, Adirondack, Lime Rock, Thunder Hill, All American, Madera, Douglas County, Toyota/Irwindale, Portland, Miller Motorsports and Colorado National Speedways.

RPM Changes Engines: In the aftermath of a broken crankshaft in last Sunday’s race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Richard Petty Motorsports will use the R5 Dodge engine under the hood of Kasey Kahne’s Budwesier Dodge this weekend, rather than the newer R6 powerplant.

Kahne has been using the R6 for a number of weeks, but periodic issues with crankshafts have prompted them to resort to the older engine. RPM’s trackside engine supervisor, Bill Pink, said new, stronger crankshafts will be ready for next weekend’s race at Kansas Speedway.

Kahne was sidelined just 66 laps into Sunday’s race, finishing 38th. He now sits 12th in the championship standings, 161 points behind leader Mark Martin.

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