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NASCAR Changes Uncontrolled Tire Rule

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NASCAR changed its rules for determining uncontrolled tire penalties on Wednesday afternoon (July 24), effective immediately across all three national series.

There will be no more determination of “an arm’s length away” when it comes to determining what it is or is not an uncontrolled tire, according to Fox Sports’ Bob Pockrass.

Officially rule – Tires and Wheels/Servicing, there will now be a a grid of eight boxes in each pit box, with the two on the near inside (wall side) of the car being the only two that are safe for tires to be in. Tires in any of the six other boxes will result in a penalty.

Also, any crew member interfering with another team’s pit stop will be subject to a penalty.

“This is something we’ve been looking at for some time over the last year or two,” Elton Sawyer, NASCAR vp of officiating and technical inspection, said. “The evolution of the pit stop has changed over time. There was a time when we needed to officiate that call based on an arm’s length.

“We have reviewed that numerous times and looked at it and feel like, in coordination with working with the teams, the timing is right to go ahead and remove that part of the rule from the rule book. We will continue to officiate uncontrolled tires. They still have to be controlled from the outside half of the pit box to the inside half.”

On four-tire pit stops, the outside tires must be changed first, in an effort to reduce the frequency of pit crew members being run over by other drivers leaving pit road.

“We felt like that going forward starting at Watkins Glen [International], for all four-tire stops you’d have to change the outside tires first,” Sawyer said.

If teams change the inside tires first on pit road, they will have to go to the tail end of the longest line if it happened under yellow or serve a pass-through penalty if it happened under green.

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First logical thing I have seen in a while.


Also with the grid and explanation it should be much more black and white for the rulings. There were several times teams got a penalty that was kind of “really” others were obvious regardless of the arms length ruile like when the 11 teams crew man literally rolled the tire from outside the right side across the “entire” pit box. That in this situation would still be a penalty

Bill B

Oh yeah, there won’t be any more controversy now when the penalty is called.


The “Brain trust” in Daytona couldn’t have thought of this themselves. There must have been an outside voice whispering in their ears AND THEY LISTENED FOR A CHANGE. It must have made cents to them.

Bobby DK

Anything common sense works for me. Besides, Elton Sawyer is part of my cool NASCAR driver first name club( Rusty, Red, Smokey, Lake ,Sterling, Cale, Loy, Dick, Ernie , Monty, Geoff and a few more that escapes me now.)


Now, I would like to see some type of either camera system or just simply light paints lines that divide the adjacent pit boxes into quarters so officials can determine a clear violation also officiate the rule like soccer –> The entire tire must clear the out-of-bounds line.


NASCAR will need some way to slow down certain teams to help the Hendrick cars. Wait until we get to the final four races. Something will happen if you have two Fords and two Toyotas as the final race arrives. They have to manufacture a way to get the Golden Boy (Chase) in it. Uncontrolled tire. the fourth-place-car will have speeding on pit road, uncontrolled tire, visit by an alien.


NASCAR, where the rules are made up and the fans don’t watch anyway. lol

I think they should go toward a pit system like F1 and Indycar – no more jackman, and one tire changer per wheel. Modify the pit boxes to make them a bit longer, and cut the front and rear outer corners at 45 degree angles (to allow unobstructed entry/exit of cars on either side of the pit box) then simply make the rule “loose wheels will remain inside pit box at all times”.

Bill B

I’d like to see them use the jacks that come with the actual car that you or I would buy from the dealership and a manual four way tire iron. And what the hell…. if you leave the pit without four hub caps, that’s a pass through penalty. LOL


That would be awesome! And no more windshield tearaways – make them get out the sponge/squeegee and a bucket of water! They’ll have plenty of time while they’re jacking the car up and working on those lug nuts… LOL

Bill B

And the drivers can get out of the car and have a sandwich and beer while the car is being serviced, just like in the 50’s.


that shade of lipstick doesn’t make this hog any more kissable…

Tom B

So all those winners this year should have an * next to their name, because probably the real winner got a drive-thru penalty that took him out of contention. And the domino effect goes all the way to the playoffs and championship winner at Homestead.

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