Earnhardt, Hamlin fail inspections

ByBob Pockrass ESPN logo
Sunday, February 15, 2015

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Dale Earnhardt Jr.and Denny Hamlin had their Daytona 500 qualifying times from Sunday disallowed as their cars failed post-qualifying technical inspection at Daytona International Speedway.

They will start at the rear of the field for their qualifying races Thursday but should have no worries about making the field for the Daytona 500 next Sunday.

Earnhardt, who had qualified 10th overall, did not meet the minimum height on the left front as Hendrick Motorsports car was one-eighth of an inch too low. Although NASCAR abandoned its ride-height rules in 2014, they still exist for Daytona and Talladega.

Hamlin's third-place time was disallowed because the separation of his rear track bar (from one side of the car to the other) was three-quarters of an inch greater than the maximum 3 inches allowed.

The Joe Gibbs Racing driver, third in the 2014 standings, is guaranteed one of the six Daytona 500 spots based on 2014 car owner points.

Earnhardt, ninth in 2014 owner points, should get one of those spots if for some reason he is not among the 15 cars to advance to the Daytona 500 through his qualifying race.

Related Video