Race Weekend Central

Chris Buescher Crew Chief, Crew Members Suspended for Loose Wheel

Chris Buescher will have to spend the next four weeks with a different crew chief after Scott Graves, the full-time crew chief for the No. 17 Ford in the NASCAR Cup Series, was suspended for a lost-wheel penalty issued by NASCAR in its weekly penalty report on June 28.

The infraction comes for an incident during last weekend’s Cup race at Nashville Superspeedway when Buescher’s right rear wheel came detached on lap 255.

Buescher finished 30th, three laps down.

In addition to Graves, jackman Matthew Wilps and rear tire changer Seth Gajdorus have been suspended for four Cup events.

This is the 12th lost-wheel penalty issued to a Cup Series team in 2022.

See also
Did You Notice?: 10 Storylines For 10 NASCAR Regular Season Races Left

Buescher has earned one top-five and four top-10 race results throughout the first 16 Cup events he has competed in this season. The Texan did not compete at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway after being diagnosed with COVID-19.

No point deduction or monetary fine was given to the RFK Racing team following the penalty.

Also in the report were four NASCAR Xfinity Series teams whose crew chiefs were all fined $5,000 for unsecured lug nuts following last weekend’s event at Nashville.

Crew chiefs Alex Bird (Ryan Vargas), Jason Trinchere (Landon Cassill), Shane Whitback (Myatt Snider) and Michael Brandt (Ryan Ellis) have all been given fines after one lug nut was found unsecured on their cars.

Finally, the hauler driver for John Hunter Nemechek in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Tony Waters, has been suspended indefinitely for violating NASCAR’s substance abuse policy.

About the author

Dalton Hopkins began writing for Frontstretch in April 2021. Currently, he is the lead writer for the weekly Thinkin' Out Loud column and one of our lead reporters. Beforehand, he wrote for IMSA shortly after graduating from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2019. Simultaneously, he also serves as a First Lieutenant in the US Army.

Follow Dalton on Twitter @PitLaneLT

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For me there are two solutions to the wheel problem. One is to eliminate the studs like F1 (they can change 4 tires in under 3 seconds) so the wheel always ends up flush and any problem would be with the nut that holds the wheel. The other is to extend a stud so it protrudes through the wheel and can be seen by the changer. It would take a bit longer to line up but it would ensure a flush fit.


F1 tire changes are faster because there are tire changers at all 4 corners and they are already in position as the car pulls into the pit and stops. Plus there is no fuel added during an F1 pit stop.


All I’m saying is that they can mount the wheel without worrying about lining up studs. So if they don’t need studs why does the brain trust at NA$CAR think it is necessary?

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