It's a rare feat in NASCAR racing to actually cross the finish line first with the checkered flag waving and not be awarded the race winner's trophy.
A rare feat, of course, until you toss in a set of rules that don't even get the judgment-call benefit of the doubt like a foul in basketball or a strike in baseball.
But that's exactly what happened to Dale Earnhardt Inc.'s rookie driver Regan Smith in October at Talladega Superspeedway. Smith, driving the No. 01, passed Tony Stewart while driving under the painted yellow line 300 yards from the finish, but was declared to have finished 17th while Stewart celebrated his lone win of 2008.
NASCAR has somewhat enforced a rule for many years to curb dangerous passes out of the groove at its two restrictor plate tracks -- Daytona and Talladega -- by saying a car must yield a gained position or it will be forced to make a pit stop if a driver advances position while below the "out of bounds," or yellow, line.