NASCAR officials penalized two Cup Series teams Tuesday for lost wheels during last weekend’s event at Dover Motor Speedway.
The No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota team for driver Denny Hamlin and the No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet team of AJ Allmendinger were each issued penalties for violating Section 10.5.2.6 of the NASCAR Rule Book, which specifies the separation of an improperly installed wheel. Because of the safety violations during the DuraMAX Drydene 400, four-race suspensions were issued to each of the following crew members:
• No. 11 team: Crew chief Chris Gabehart, jackman Derrell Edwards, front-tire changer Blake Houston
• No. 16 team: Crew chief Matt Swiderski, front-tire changer Keiston France, jackman Jonathan Willard
UPDATE: On Wednesday, a NASCAR spokesperson said Joe Gibbs Racing will appeal the penalties to the No. 11 team. While under appeal, the JGR crew members listed in the penalty report will be permitted to participate for the No. 11 team.
In the Xfinity Series, two wheel-related penalties were handed out after Dover. The JR Motorsports No. 1 Chevrolet team for driver Sam Mayer was hit with four-race suspensions to three crew members for the loss of a wheel during Saturday’s 200-miler. Crew chief Taylor Moyer and crew members Orane Ossowski (rear changer) and Markus Pierce-Brewster (jack) were suspended for the next four events.
Additionally, the No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet team on the Xfinity side was fined for having one unsecured lug nut in a post-race check. Crew chief Bruce Schlicker was fined $5,000.
NASCAR officials also announced an indefinite suspension to Jason Houghtaling, the result of a behavioral penalty under Sections 4.4.e of the Rule Book (NASCAR Member Code of Conduct). Houghtaling had been listed as the crew chief of Jesse Iwuji Motorsports’ No. 34 entry on team rosters for the first eight races of the season.