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Racing briefs

Compiled from Times wires
© St. Petersburg Times
published July 19, 2002


Still no apologies in return to spot of spat

LOUDON, N.H. -- The first bump gave Robby Gordon his only Winston Cup victory. The second cost Jeff Gordon an almost-certain win.

The Gordons return this weekend to New Hampshire International Speedway, site of a major confrontation in last season's finale, for the New England 300.

Jeff Gordon led 257 of the 300 laps last year and was on his way to a win when he slowed his Chevrolet with 16 laps to go to avoid running into lapped cars. Robby, who is not related to the four-time Winston Cup champion, rammed Jeff from behind.

The contact sent Jeff's Chevy sideways and into Mike Wallace's car, causing front-end damage. During the caution period, Jeff gave Robby a retaliatory bump that drew a one-lap penalty and cost him any chance at a win.

Without Jeff to contend with, Robby took over the lead and won the race. Jeff finished 15th.

As they prepared to return to the track for today's qualifying, Robby Gordon still was defending his actions.

"Getting into Gordon wasn't supposed to be part of the deal. ... Gordon checked up and I didn't get checked up quick enough and got into the back of him a tiny bit," Robby said. "It wasn't like I wrecked him; I just moved him out of the way a bit."

FIVE FINED: NASCAR officials have fined five Winston Cup crew chiefs for violations discovered during inspections before and after Sunday's Tropicana 400 at Chicagoland Speedway.

Tony Eury, crew chief for Dale Earnhardt Jr., was fined $2,500 for unapproved use of a refrigerant near the fuel system.

Steven Lane, crew chief for Kyle Petty, was fined $2,500 for using unapproved adjustable fender braces and Lane and Greg Zipadelli, crew chief for Tony Stewart, both were fined $500 for using unapproved jacking bolts.

Brandon Thomas, crew chief for John Andretti, and Greg Steadman, crew chief for Steve Grissom, each was fined $2,500 for using an unapproved fuel filler neck that exceeded the maximum size.

LUYENDYK RETURNS: Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Arie Luyendyk will drive a Treadway-Hubbard entry in the Michigan Indy 400 on July 28. It will be Luyendyk's first IRL start other than the Indy 500 since October 1998.

LATE WEDNESDAY: Stewart won a Modified race at Thompson International Speedway in Thompson, Conn., beating old rival Teddy Christopher in a photo finish.

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