At the conclusion of last Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Cole Custer’s No. 41 Ford Mustang was found to have two unsecured lug nuts in post-race inspection.
This infraction came with a one-race suspension for Custer’s crew chief Mike Shiplett, which will be served this weekend during the InstaCart 500 at Phoenix Raceway.
According to NASCAR Team Rosters and the preliminary entry list for Phoneix, and confirmed by Stewart-Haas Racing, the No. 41 team’s lead engineer Davin Restivo will serve as interim crew chief this weekend while the team waits for Shiplett to return from suspension.
While Stewart-Haas Racing’s competition director Greg Zipadelli turned back clocks by stepping into the interim crew chief role during several SHR crew chief suspensions a season ago, there is nobody possibly more qualified to pick up where Shiplett left off than Restivo.
Restivo and Shiplett have been teamed together for years, dating back to their days on the Chip Ganassi Racing NASCAR Xfinity Series team. When that team closed down, the duo followed each other to Stewart-Haas Racing.
Sunday’s race will mark the first time Restivo has ever been a crew chief at the NASCAR National Series level.