Jamie McMurray’s crew chief agrees with NASCAR to not allow repairs on car during Dover red-flag

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Crew chief Keith Rodden said Saturday that he has no problem with NASCAR not allowing him or his pit crew to work on Jamie McMurray’s car under red-flag conditions during last Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway.

Rodden told MRN.com’s Dustin Long that NASCAR made the right call not to allow repairs on McMurray’s car, which was damaged when a chunk of concrete broke free from the track surface and into the front grill of his Chevrolet.

“I think you can’t just make a special (rule) in the middle of the race,” Rodden said. “I think if you go into a season or go into a event where everybody knows what the deal is (it’s OK). There’s always going to be times where something like that could happen and impact your car or your race.”

NASCAR rules typically do not allow teams to work on cars during red flag periods, although there have been rare exceptions in the past due to the discretionary powers NASCAR officials have.

One of the most recent instances was last year when a TV cable fell at Charlotte Motor Speedway and damaged several cars while on-track.

Rodden told Long that the chunk of concrete “destroyed the splitter” as well as other parts of the front end. Further damage occurred when McMurray’s car went up the track after contacting the concrete and hit the outside retaining wall with the right fender.

“What are they going to do, wait on us to start the race back?” Rodden said. “I wish the track wouldn’t come up like that so it doesn’t put anybody in a bad spot.

“Obviously, Dover didn’t want that to happen either. There’s nothing you can do about it.”

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Verstappen doesn’t want F1 season to end after recent run of form

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Max Verstappen says he is not ready for the 2017 Formula 1 season to come to an end after enjoying a run of strong form through the closing stages of the campaign.

Verstappen endured a rocky run of form through to the end of the European season that saw him suffer a number of reliability issues and score just a single podium finish, taking third in China back in April.

However, the Dutchman has rallied to score more points than any other driver in the last five races, including victories in Malaysia and Mexico, as well as a podium finish in Japan.

Verstappen heads into next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix chasing a third win of the year to sign off, but joked he does not want the season to end just as he’s got into a good groove.

“We will, of course, try and end the season with a strong result in Abu Dhabi,” Verstappen said. “Last year was actually quite a good race after skipping a pit stop following a spin at Turn 1, it was hard to manage the tires to the end of the race but we did it and finished fourth.

“I would say that my favorite part of the track is at Turns 2 and 3, the fast left, right. It’s also very cool driving underneath the hotel and racing in the darkness with all the lights.

“The final sector at Yas Marina is actually quite technical so you have to be really precise there, but it should also be our strongest part of the track.

“There are quite a few overtaking opportunities to make the race interesting, before the long straight at the hairpin and then at the end of the straight under braking for the next chicane section.

“Abu Dhabi is the last race on the calendar, but I don’t actually want the season to end. I’m really fired up at the moment and I just want to keep going.

“The nice thing will be to spend some time with friends and family over the winter break and then I will look ahead to January and get back into training before it all starts again.”