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The Pit Stop


May 2, 2007 11:53 PM

What The ... ? Can You Explain This To Me, Please?

Harvick and McMurray were punished for contact between the two while the caution flew for the last time during Sunday's Talladega race.

Each driver has to cough up $25,ooo and is placed on probation until Oct. 3rd.

What? I don't get it.

Carl Edwards uses his car as a weapon 'Days of Thunder' style after a race is over and tries to take off Dale Jr's hand in the process and he is only fined $20,000 and placed on probation. And this is less then a month after he deliberately spins out Tony Stewart on Pit Road during a caution period at Pocono endangering the lives of pit crew members and not getting fined at all (if memory serves correct).

Then Harvick and McMurray get this? What a joke, what Edwards did is much worse than this and yet he got less.

NASCAR didn't even see the contact between Harvick and McMurray happen, they saw it later on video!

"This particular incident was brought to our attention after the race, when we were reviewing the finishing order," NASCAR spokesperson Kerry Tharp said. "If you recall, we had to go back and look at the videotape and the scoring loops to determine the finishing order after the race ended under caution.

"It was brought to our attention then, and we reviewed the video again on Tuesday, as we normally do. We had discussions as a group and agreed that it warranted a penalty." - source: NASCAR.com

Again I am dumbfounded by the lack of consistency in NASCAR's rule enforcement/punishment. It seems that Section 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing) of the NASCAR rule book is a catch-all for everything that NASCAR doesn't like.

Look out, get NASCAR mad at you about anything and you'll be seeing Section 12-4-A coming your way. If NASCAR wants to send a message, guaranteed someone will get punished under Section 12-4-A.

Case in point, Tony Stewart. He was charged with violating Section 12-4-A (actions detrimental to stock car racing) as well as 12-4-H (any member who violates 7-2B: Failure to meet obligation of an accepted entry; failure to fulfill post-race media obligation - with addition to the winning driver, the second and third-place drivers and the highest finishing rookie of the year candidate must also report to the media center upon the conclusion of the race) and placed on probation until Dec. 31 for not reporting to the media centre after the race at Phoenix.

What is funny about this is that "this was not the first time Stewart had opted out of his media responsibilities, but NASCAR Vice President of Corporate Communications Jim Hunter said he believed it was the first time a NASCAR competitor had been fined for such an action." - source Scenedaily.com.

We all know that the real reason Tony got fined was for what he said on his radio show and not for skipping the media event, this was just NASCAR's way of getting the message out to Tony and everyone else to watch what they say - or else!

What about Montoya's flipping 'the bird' penalty last week? He got put on probation and fined 10 grand under only one section of the Rule Book (Section 12-4-A), while during the same race weekend the #25 Busch team was obviously cheating to gain a competitive advantage and were in violation of 3 sections of the Rule Book (including Section 12-4-A) and the crew chief only got fined 2 grand and no probation.

The only thing consistent about NASCAR's rule enforcement is its inconsistency.

Photo Credits: Jamie McMurray (AP Photo/Paul Kizzle), Kevin Harvick (AP Photo/Jason Babyak)

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