Tony Stewart looking to breakthrough at Talladega

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“You got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em, know when to walk away, know when to run.” Coming from Kenny Rogers’ 1980 Grammy Award-winning song “The Gambler,” those four directives are bits of sage advice for anyone participating in a game of chance, and chance is something every NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver is well acquainted with, especially for those competing in the 2012 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

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NASCAR penalizes Tony Stewart, racing team

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So much for the afterglow of winning the big race Saturday night.

NASCAR disallowed the second-place qualifying time of Stewart when it was discovered the team had an open cooling hose in the cockpit, which is in violation of Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4J (any determination by NASCAR officials that the race equipment used in the event does not conform to NASCAR rules detailed in Section 20 of the NASCAR Rule Book); and 20-2.1J (unapproved open vent hose inside of the car). Instead of starting second, Stewart was forced to start 42nd.

Today, NASCAR further penalized the No. 14 team. Crew chief Steve Addington has been fined $25,000 and placed on NASCAR probation until Aug. 22. Car chief Jeff Meendering has been placed on NASCAR probation until Aug. 22. Stewart and owner Margaret Haas have been penalized with the loss of six championship driver and six championship owner points, respectively.

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