Roush Appeal Denied

HOMESTEAD, Fla. -- Mark Martin will start Sunday's Ford 400 89 points behind Tony Stewart after all.

A three-man board representing the National Stock Car Racing Commission Saturday morning denied Roush Racing's appeal of points and monetary penalties levied after the Pop Secret 400 at North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham.

After about a two hour meeting with Roush Racing representatives, the board, consisting of NSCRC chairman George Silbermann, John Bishop and Johnny Capels upheld NASCAR's original decision.

The panel's ruling maintained a 25-point driver point deduction for Martin, a 25-point owner point deduction for Jack Roush and a $5,000 fine for Leslie.

The penalties were levied when the post-race inspection at Rockingham revealed the car's left front spring had fewer than the required minimum 4.5 coils.

The commission's statement said, "The spring rule, as written, is clear. The spring from the No. 6 car did not meet the requirements of the rule. NASCAR acted fairly and consistently in issuing the penalties.

"It is therefore the unanimous decision of the National Stock Car Racing Commission to uphold the penalty assessed by NASCAR. The appellants have the right, under Section 15 of the NASCAR rulebook, to appeal this decision to the National Stock Car Racing commissioner."

NSCRC member John Cooper, former president of Daytona International Speedway and Indianapolis Motor Speedway, said Silbermann determines the appeal board makeup, and that in his long tenure on the commission Cooper had been called "about once a year."

Cooper was at the track, as was commission member Les Richter, a former NASCAR vice president and president of the former Riverside International Raceway.

"I think in this case they wanted to get a couple members that had experience with sanctioning bodies," Cooper said Saturday at the track. "And they got a couple good ones."

Bishop was a former high-level administrator with the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and was the founder and president of IMSA, another road race sanctioning body. Capels was formerly president of USAC and held a role with the CART Fed-Ex Championship Series.

Related Topics:

NASCAR Sprint Cup, 2002, Mark Martin

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