Eury getting fined? Junior's got him covered

DARLINGTON, S.C. -- Tony Eury Jr. fully expects a penalty from NASCAR this week and Dale Earnhardt Jr. is prepared to help his crew chief pay it.

NASCAR confiscated the rear wing mounts from Earnhardt Jr.'s car on Saturday before the Nextel Cup race at Darlington Raceway was postponed until Sunday due to rain.

Eury called it an "interpretation."

"It was a bad deal," he said. "It was a part that got put on there that shouldn't have. We've done a lot of offseason testing for NASCAR. There's been three different styles of brackets on there and it just happened to be one of those old-style brackets."

Eury said the brackets were the same ones that weren't discovered during pre- or post-qualifying inspections.

"It fit all of their templates," he said. "It just had a problem when you put [the angle] to where you should have."

Eury said he tried to explain how to fix the problem to series director John Darby.

"I was definitely not trying to get away with nothing, so you can take it for what it is," he said. "There's nothing I can do about it. Whatever they hand down, it certainly wasn't on purpose."

Earnhardt, who was critical of the Car of Tomorrow a week ago, was so happy with his eighth-place finish, which came three days after announcing plans to leave Dale Earnhardt Inc. following this season, that he offered to pay the fine.

"Whatever he needs me to do," Earnhardt said. "I don't really know what he was trying to accomplish there. We still ran all right with the stock positions."

Why pit?
Jimmie Johnson wasn't second guessing the decision to pit for four tires late while Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jeff Gordon stayed out to take the lead.

"New tires always face off here," said Johnson, who pitted for tires only six laps earlier. "If I was back in that position I think I would go for tires again."

Johnson restarted seventh and moved to third before being held up for several laps by Ryan Newman.

"I thought we were golden," he said. "The first restart I got two or three positions on the lapped cars and I'm sitting there behind [Dale Earnhardt Jr.] on that final restart and thought I was in great position.

"We were just too far behind at that point and plus, the last set of tires didn't work out for us. We were too tight."

Testing canceled
The Monday and Tuesday tests at Dover International Speedway were canceled, due to the postponement of the Darlington race, and will not be made up.

NASCAR officials might consider adding a Car of Tomorrow test at a 1.5-mile track late in the season with the governing body leaning toward going to a full COT schedule in 2008.

David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at dnewtonespn@aol.com.