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Indy 500: 13 cars hit by penalty fines
21 May 2012
The IZOD IndyCar Series announced a raft of penalty fines on 13 of the cars taking part in the qualification weekend for the 96th running of the Indy 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend - but no grid position penalties are involved.
11 cars were affected by penalties for technical infringements related to the braking systems. In particular one of the rules that is cited by the penalty notice relates to the banning of computer logic to control any function of the braking system - in other words, traction control systems.
Ryan Briscoe's pole-winning #2 Penske car and the #12 of his team mate Will Power, JR Hildebrand's #4 Panther Racing car and the KV Racing #5 and #8 cars of EJ Viso and Rubens Barrichello are all affected.
Scott Dixon's #9 Ganassi, Justin Wilson's #18 Dale Coyne Racing machine, Jean Alesi's #64 Fan Force United car and three of the Andretti Autosports cars (the #25 of Ana Beatriz, the #26 of Marco Andretti and the #28 of Ryan Hunter-Reay) were also penalised and have been fined $15,000 each.
The violations were found during pre-qualifying technical inspection, with officials sending the cars back to their pit stalls to be corrected before being allowed to make their qualifying attempts. That means the infringements do not affect the subsequent qualifying times or the resulting starting grid positions of any car.
As well as the braking system-related penalty, Jean Alesi's #64 team will also have to pay up a further $50,000 for infringing rules related to the driver equivalency weight.
Hunter-Reay and Andretti's teams were additionally fined $10,000 for not obeying the directions of IndyCar officials, as was another Andretti Autosport - the #27 GoDaddy.com car of James Hinchcliffe.
Hunter-Reay and Hinchcliffe's teams were further cited for an infringement of the rule governing the use of car and driver cooling aids and fined another $10,000. It's thought that in the Andretti duo's case, a brake cooling fan was used outside the pit stall area where it is allowed.
Finally, Mike Conway's #14 AJ Foyt Racing car was hit by a $10,000 fine for using a non-approved or improperly altered component not sanctioned by the IZOD IndyCar Series or its official suppliers.
In total, the 18 levied penalties on the 13 different car teams amount to $275,000, and all three cars on the front row of the grid for the 2012 Indianapolis 500 have been fined for at least one violation.
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