Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. penalized after Charlotte qualifying

Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s crew works on his car during inspection Thursday at Charlotte (Photo: Greg Engle)
Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s crew works on his car during inspection Thursday at Charlotte (Photo: Greg Engle)
Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s crew works on his car during inspection Thursday at Charlotte (Photo: Greg Engle)

Hendrick Motorsports drivers Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. will have a tough time during Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Coca-Cola 600.  Friday night after qualifying, the drivers learned that they won’t have many pit stalls to choose from for Sunday.

After the qualifying session Friday, NASCAR announced that three teams will be forced to chose their pit stalls last for Sunday’s race due to accumulating 4 inspection violations. The Richard Petty Motor Sports team of Aric Almirola came into Charlotte with 2 previous penalties. They failed both the templates and the laser inspection one time each Thursday and were forced to make corrections before passing, those two failures added up to four. The Hendrick Motorsports teams of Johnson and Earnhardt Jr. both had three penalties coming into the weekend. Both failed the templates Thursday thus each earning their fourth penalty.

Under NASCAR rule 12.5.3.1 D teams that accumulate 4 inspection penalties will lose pit selection for the next race if after qualifying, if before qualifying, the loss of pit selection will occur at the same event.  Johnson secured the seventh starting spot, Almirola, 20th.

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About Greg Engle 7420 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for Examiner.com and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.