Martin Truex Jr.’s car chief, Blake Harris, has been ejected for the rest of the weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
The No.78 Toyota failed inspection at the optical scanning station three times, and with NASCAR’s at-track deterrence model for this season, it results in a crew member being ejected. Truex will also have to serve a 30-minute hold in final practice Saturday afternoon.
The issue was with the rear wheel alignment and rear toe.
Truex did not attempt a qualifying lap and will start last in the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500. Furniture Row Racing said they ran out of time to go through inspection a fourth time.
“Look, it’s a new process and we’re working hard, collectively the whole garage is, to figure it out, figure the boundaries out and how to get through,” team president Joe Garone said. “NASCAR’s working with their equipment the same way, and it’s just tough. It’s tough.
“One time you go through, the next time you don’t. You go through again and some things pass that didn’t pass the time before, it’s just frustrating. But we’ll get it all worked out. It’s just a matter of time.”
Garone also said, “The tolerances are very tight and it’s difficult to get through and push where you need to and be conservative where you need to. It does change every time you go through.”
Had Truex failed inspection a fourth time, crew chief Cole Pearn would have been subject to ejection.
In response to Furniture Row Racing disputing the equipment and claiming it was inconsistent, NASCAR senior vice president of competition Scott Miller chuckled and said, “Of course they are going to say that.
“But we had 20 people make it through on their first attempt and multiple people saying how consistent the rear wheel alignment was versus our equipment last year. The only comments I had today on the rear wheel alignment part was positive comments, not negative comments We ended up with one, and all I can say is I feel like we did our job.”