The disqualification of Corey Heim on Saturday night at South Boston Speedway has turned into a he said – they said disagreement between car builder Lee Pulliam and track officials.
The 16-year-old driver swept both halves of a twin 75-lap doubleheader before track officials opted to inspect the rear-ends of the top-finishing cars. The Lee Pulliam Performance No. 78 was deemed to be non-compliant, specifically relating to toe and camber — something the track confirmed with a statement on Tuesday evening.
The track pointed to a section of the NASCAR Late Model Stock rule book that states “cambered rear axle housings or rear axle housings with toe will not be permitted. The method used to check camber and toe will be at the track official’s discretion.”
However, Pulliam has said all day that his driver’s disqualification had nothing to do with camber or toe. He posted the following statement to his Facebook page:
“I don’t agree with the call, as I feel like the way the rule is written this rear end is not illegal.
“It is what it is and we will move on. This rear-end passed on camber unlike what has been published in different stories. The toe also checked dead straight. We are basically being thrown out for rear skew. In the rule book it states no camber or toe. Skew is not toe. If you turn your front tires to the right and check your toe it’s still toe. I don’t agree at all with the decision but for all the many many teams out here running skew I would suggest you take it out as apparently the grey areas of the rule book doesn’t exist anymore.”
Pulliam had pushed for South Boston officials to send the car to the NASCAR R&D Center for further evaluation, believing a jig would vindicate the legality of his car. The track agreed to send the rear-end components to the Concord, North Carolina facility, but they never made it there. After learning it would take a minimum of two weeks to get the components reviewed, South Boston conferred with NASCAR who agreed that South Boston likely had enough evidence to disqualify Heim.
Ryan Repko finished second in both races and has been credited with the clean sweep instead.
For his part, Pulliam has taken the high road with his rebuttal but believes this decision will have long-standing repercussions.
“Guess this will change a lot of things moving forward as I feel like they have opened up a can of worms. I thank everyone for there support and we will be back stronger than ever. I have no hard feelings towards NASCAR or the track but I respectfully disagree with the decision.”
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