Sprint Cup qualifying was delayed, but never started for some such as former champions Jeff Gordon, Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart and Jimmie Johnson.
HAMPTON, Ga. – Last week’s polesitter Jeff Gordon never had the opportunity to qualify on Friday at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Gordon sounds off
For the four-time champion, it was the first time in his career that he was denied the chance to participate time trials. He described the experience as “embarrassing”.
Twenty crew chiefs with this much experience should know how to get through inspection
Team manager reacting to tech issues
“It’s ridiculous,” Gordon said. “The fans, they deserve an apology. I don’t know how many cars are still back here that never got the chance to get on the track. I know we went through twice. When you have this many? I’ve seen five or six, maybe 10 cars that have issues going with certain little things. But this many cars that didn’t go? That’s not on these teams. They deserve better than this, I can’t believe how disappointing this is.”
Only 34 of 47 get on track
He wasn’t alone. Thirteen of 47 cars never made it on the track due to delays in qualifying due to attempting to pass through NASCAR’s Laser Inspection System (LIS). Among the drivers were Sprint Cup champions Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth and Tony Stewart.
“Twenty crew chiefs with this much experience should know how to get through inspection,” said one team manager after qualifying was delayed by 15 minutes in an attempt for more teams to get through the LIS.
“I assume I’ll make the race,” Gordon added. “Who knows what will even happen with the points and what’s going on. There are guys that don’t have the points, that I know are going home that never had the chance to get out there.
“This is a big letdown for me and for our series right not that this happened, because this should never happen.”
Michael Annett, Reed Sorenson, Mike Wallace, and Matt DiBenedetto were the four who failed to make the race. NASCAR was still working on a comment regarding the fiasco as this report was filed.