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Scheckter hit with penalty

Tomas Scheckter will start from the back of the grid for the Chevy 500 IRL IndyCar Series race at the Texas Motor Speedway after officials found technical violations on his and Panther Racing team-mate Townsend Bell's Dallara-Chevrolets during a post-qualifying inspection

The South African's season has been littered with disappointments, but this may well be the cruellest blow of all. Scheckter qualified second, his best result of the season, behind Penske's Helio Castroneves after using a special Chevrolet qualifying engine. The Panther team has also been fined an undisclosed amount of money.

"Panther Racing qualified for the Chevy 500 in race cars that had passed technical inspection on two occasions Friday - prior to the first practice and again as the car was rolled onto the qualifying grid," said a team statement. "Unfortunately, the same cars that passed the previous technical inspections did not pass the post-qualification technical inspection.

"We are disappointed in the result, but we are fully supportive of the IndyCar technical inspection staff, rules and rulings. It is Panther Racing's belief that aggressive technical inspections and rules help keep the playing field even for all teams. We are confident that the rules are and will continue to be enforced equally across all teams.

"Panther Racing is committed to winning races in the IndyCar Series and it is our desire to do so with cars that fit within every rule and regulation of the IndyCar Series."

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