COVID-19 protocols have sidelined crew chief Ryan Sparks and two other members of the #7 Spire Motorsports team of Corey LaJoie for Sunday’s Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Former Hendrick Motorsports crew chief Steve Letarte will be the substitute crew chief.
Letarte, a consultant for Spire Motorsports and NASCAR on NBC broadcaster, was a crew chief at Hendrick Motorsports between 2005 and 2014. AT HMS, he worked, first, with Jeff Gordon on the #24 team and, then, with Dale Earnhardt Jr. on the #88 team. In 330 races as a NASCAR Cup Series crew chief, Letarte has 14 wins.
LaJoie is 15th in the Cup Series driver points standings after two races in 2021. He has a best finish of ninth in the season-opening Daytona 500.