Why Rahal wasn’t give a stop-and-go penalty

Question: Why was Graham Rahal not slapped with a pit safety violation when he left the pits with the fuel hose still attached? That was clearly a situation with no ambiguity, like an on-track racing incident that calls for further review and action after the race has been completed. Such incidents like this, running over air hoses, or hitting tires in pit lane have traditionally resulted in immediate drive through penalties in the past. (John, Los Angeles)

Answer: Before the season, IndyCar made a change to its officiating relative to pit road problems. The reasoning: If the problem only impacts the guilty team, it's play on with penalties to come after a post-race review. I think IndyCar has been consistent with this (remembering Juan Pablo Montoya running over the air hose in the 500). In the past, a drive-through penalty would have all but eliminated Montoya's chance to win; same with Rahal in this instance. The difference in this case was that Rahal ended up causing a yellow by having the fuel buckeye be the debris on the track. I'm told race control did not know what the debris was at the time it called for a post-race review on Rahal. (How that's possible is another issue.) The bottom line here is, Rahal caught a break. Truth be known, he was owed one after a series of tough things going against him in recent years. Curt Cavin/Indy Star

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