My 2 cents, not that it matters - Lima/NRA doesn't pay by team points, they pay by driver points, taking an owner out for 1, 2, 10 races doesn't cost the team a dime at the end of the season. Teams violating a rule in a DASH, not a heat, not feature, but a DASH, effectively being DQd for the night is ridiculous. Teams have violated many of the written rules before, such as not stopping at the scales after the heat and the driver has to tag the next event (usually B main, but for some reason not enough cars for a B main anymore and don't tell me it's the economy), team members having physical altercations with no point penalty for the night it happened or 2 race suspension for the team, much more egregious than taking the wrong exit from the track to try to get to work to fix a mechanical issue... but hey, let's enforce the rules differently every week and overrule the guy whose job it is to make those decisions.
Taking a driver out for 2 races, (3 counting last Friday) does cost money. NRA champ pays 10k this year you see the difference yet?
Lima didn't used to schedule sprint shows during Knoxville and local guys could go run without point penalty and I remember seeing many Lima/NRA guys at the 360 nationals in the past - guarantee if certain drivers were planning to run the Knoxville 360 nationals that Lima wouldn't have a sprint car points paying event that weekend (as they have done in the past, IF 360s ran that weekend, it was a non points race), let alone a NRA points paying race.
Not being at the banquet = you don't get your money, got it, the racing world revolves around Lima, Ohio, BUT the team earned that money last year and as a compromise asked that their payout be donated to the charity that Hannigan raced in during the banquet (Kick it for Cancer), of course that money was not paid out and was not donated, guess they needed it for the Florida trip or the NASCAR truck sponsorship in Bristol. How cool would it have been to have that donation from the NRA, UNOH & Randy Hannigan during that event in California, wow, that woulda been cool. Terrible that instead of taking advantage of a high caliber racer to bring credibility and notoriety to a series, the choice is made to alienate them and remain an obscure series with a set of rules different than 95% of the 360's in the country run (ASCS).
Doesn't matter who elevated the non-issue and made it into a big deal, teams have every right to try to gain an advantage any way they can (not something I would have done personally), the people making the decision overturn the decision of the man hired to do the job, did not make the correct one. Most they should have done was fine them the $ the dash paid, or at the VERY MOST, tag the tail of the next event which would been the heat race, once that time/opportunity passed, it's passed. Next time someone jumps a start they gonna DQ them for the night? Someone passes a Red flag in hotlaps, DQ them for the night? Skip the scales, DQ them for the night? Put hands on a member of another race team, official or spectator..... DQ them for the night, no points?.
J.R. Stewart is a very fine race driver and Mr. Hammons has great race teams and equipment, it's a shame that the PERCEPTION of Lima's/NRAs actions puts a stain on what the 2014 NRA season will be remembered for by some, would love to see Ron and J.R. Stewart and Mad Max at Knoxville this weekend with the best sprint car drivers and teams in the country, but I understand it's a costly trip and their are points races to run back home in Lima, Ohio. Sorry for the book, and this opinion is my own.
Edited by armyduke, 02 August 2014 - 01:12 AM.