NASCAR admitted Tuesday that it made a mistake in the placement of the cars of Parker Kligerman, Josh Berry and Sammy Smith for overtime restarts in Saturday’s Xfinity Series race at Watkins Glen International.
Kligerman is the first driver out of the playoff zone with three races remaining in the regular season. He is three points behind Riley Herbst and 22 points behind Sheldon Creed. Smith into the playoffs by winning. Perry is 106 points above the cut line.
“I have no idea why we resumed racing in ninth place,” Kligerman said after finishing third in Saturday’s race. “We have to talk to NASCAR and someone has to explain that to me because I’m pretty sure the car that hit me in the wreck was[Perry]who’s going to start fifth. I’m being sent to ninth. If we start fifth, we’ll win this race. And that’s it.” Really disappointing.
NASCAR has admitted its fault to those affected.
“Our goal is to get back on the green as soon as possible,” NASCAR told NBC Sports on Tuesday. “There is no time limit in NASCAR, so we need to move quickly to give fans as many green flag laps as possible. In this case, we should have taken action.” The extra step, maybe the extra lap, to ensure the right combination.
An accident with four laps to go sent the race into overtime. Justin Allgaier spun out of the inner ring. The accident brought together Alex Bowman and Brandon Jones.
The first three cars were before the accident. Allgaier, who finishes fourth, spun after a connection by Cole Custer. Custer has passed.
Several cars raced for fifth place. Bowman’s car then hit Conor Mossack’s car and came onto the track. Smith went to the outside of the spinning Allgaier car and Kligerman went to the inside. Perry followed Kligerman on the inside, slamming into the back of Kligerman’s car while slamming his right-side tire into the grass.
The accident occurred at the registration loop site at the entrance to the turn. When the warning came, this recording loop was used to determine the line-up.
NASCAR explained to NBC Sports the reason for the problem with the lineup: “At the time of the caution, the transponder (Perry) hadn’t hit the loop (it was part grass, part rumble bar), so he didn’t register the freeze position. … the lineup goes back to the previous loop at the time of Caution, where we misplaced (Perry’s car) at the time of the caution versus its position in the previous episode, and this affected the position of (Kligerman) and (Smith).
The order as the cars selected lanes for overtime restarts were Perry fifth, Smith eighth, and Kligerman ninth.
Perry spun in the carousel on the next-to-last lap and finished 20th. Smith spun at the final corner coming to the white flag and finished eighteenth. Kligerman finished third. Sam Mayer won.
Elton Sawyer, NASCAR’s senior vice president of competition, said Tuesday on “The Morning Drive” on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that NASCAR made “some corrections” after the race to address the matter.
NASCAR told NBC Sports that the changes made were related to the process. Technical and procedural criteria remain the same. NASCAR told NBC Sports that no changes will be made to how officials designate the lineup for the restart ahead of this weekend’s Cup and Xfinity races in Daytona and the Craftsman Truck race in Milwaukee.