One of the most highly-publicized professional racing drivers in NASCAR history recently received a huge penalty from the governing body for concerns related to missing lug nuts from the wheels of race cars.
Citing their new "behavioral policy", NASCAR's fine was revealed just one day after Tony Stewart made comments warning the industry that drivers are in danger unless they begin to police pit stops to ensure all lug nuts are replaced when changing wheels.
Stewart was slapped with a $35,000 fine for his criticizing remarks about the misuse of lug nuts.
"For all the work...and all these other things they want us to do for safety, we can't even make sure we put five lug nuts on the wheel," Stewart said on Wednesday, April 20th. "This is not a game you play with safety and that's exactly the way I feel like NASCAR is treating this. This is not the way to do this."
The chairman, Brian France, called Stewart "wrong", arguing that the series takes pride in their constant improvement of safety.
That same day, Stewart had announced he'd be returning to competitive racing after suffering a back injury during an ATV accident.
As Yahoo! Sports reveals, in 2015 NASCAR stopped officiating missing lug nuts and since then, there have been repeated incidents with loose wheels because of missing lug nuts on cars. The advantage of leaving one lug nut off is that teams are able to complete pit stops faster, thereby achieving a better position in the race.
However, the downfalls heavily outweigh winning a race and comments expressing his frustrations with the dangerous practice were what got Stewart in hot water and ladled with hefty fine.
"It's however many you think you can get away with," Stewart said. "So we're putting the drivers in jeopardy to get track position. It's not bit anybody yet, but I guarantee you that envelope is going to keep getting pushed until somebody gets hurt."
What do y'all think about the practice? Do you agree that Stewart was fined for his behavior? Let us know in the comments below.