The NASCAR Cup Series teams took part in pre-race inspection at Martinsville Speedway on Friday, April 8. The majority passed on the first or second attempt, but the No. 16 of AJ Allmendinger failed three times.
Kaulig Racing‘s entry with rotating drivers was able to pass inspection on the fourth attempt, but Allmendinger was not able to post a qualifying lap. He will have to start the race from the rear of the field, and he will have to serve a pass-through penalty on the opening lap. Additionally, NASCAR announced the ejection of engineer Michael Brookes ahead of the Cup Series race.
Allmendinger will start at the rear of the field as he suits up for his 22nd career Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway, and he will strive to achieve more success. The veteran driver has seven top-10 finishes at the short track, as well as two runner-ups. He finished second behind Ryan Newman in 2012 while driving for Team Penske, and then he finished second behind Kyle Busch in 2016 while driving for JTG Daugherty Racing.
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Allmendinger’s Entry Has Failed Inspection in Multiple Races
The trip to Martinsville Speedway marks the second consecutive week that Allmendinger has lost a crew member for a race. The No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet Camaro also failed inspection twice at Richmond Raceway, resulting in the ejection of a crew member.
While Allmendinger failed inspection twice, he was still able to complete a qualifying lap. Though he only posted the 27th-fastest time during the session, which dropped him to the 13th row next to Austin Dillon. The Dinger then finished the race 27th overall.
The veteran will now start another race at a disadvantage after failing inspection three times. He will begin the evening on the last row next to Rick Ware Racing’s Cody Ware, but he will have to serve his pass-through penalty on the first lap, which will likely drop him one lap down.
Allmendinger Will Step Back After Martinsville
Allmendinger is spending the 2022 Cup Series season sharing the No. 16 Chevrolet with Noah Gragson and Daniel Hemric. Martinsville will be his fourth start in the past five races, but it will mark his last until the month of May.
Once the trip to Martinsville Speedway comes to an end, Allmendinger will pass off the steering wheel to two other drivers. Noah Gragson will take over the No. 16 Chevrolet for the night race at Bristol Motor Speedway, which will serve as his second start for Kaulig Racing after the trip to Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Daniel Hemric, the reigning Xfinity Series champion, will finish out the month of April. He will take over the No. 16 for the Geico 500 at Talladega Superspeedway, which will serve as his fourth start of the year. He kicked off the season by competing in the Daytona 500, the Wise Power 400 at Auto Club Speedway, and the Pennzoil 400 presented by Jiffy Lube at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He hasn’t been back in the entry since, but he will make his return for another superspeedway race.