NASCAR has amended penalties set against Hendrick Motorsports, it announced March 29.
The original penalty was handed following the Phoenix Raceway NASCAR Cup Series weekend after NASCAR confiscated louvers from the HMS cars during a practice session.
NASCAR had originally cited the following sections in the penalty: Section 6.1 Time/Manner/Location; 14.1.C,D,Q, which relates to the assembly of the car, and 126.96.36.199.A, which cites the radiator duct.
The penalties issued included a loss of 100 driver points and owner points for the Nos. 5, 24 and 48, as well as a deduction of 10 playoff points. The No. 9 team was also deducted 100 owner points and 10 playoff points. Each team was also fined $100,000 and all four crew chiefs were suspended for four races.
After an appeal hearing, the appeals board amended the penalty to restore all driver, owner and playoff points to the team.
“We are pleased that the National Motorsports Appeals Panel agreed that Hendrick Motorsports violated the rule book,” NASCAR said in a statement“However, we are disappointed that the entirety of the penalty was not upheld. A points penalty is a strong deterrent that is necessary to govern the garage following rule book violations, and we believe that it was an important part of the penalty in this case and moving forward. We will continue to inspect and officiate the NASCAR garage at the highest level of scrutiny to ensure a fair and level playing field for our fans and the entire garage.”
The $100,000 fines and suspensions, however, were upheld, making crew chiefs Cliff Daniels, Alan Gustafson, Rudy Fugle and Blake Harris eligible to return to the track at Martinsville Speedway.
“We are grateful to the National Motorsports Appeals Panel for their time and attention,” HMS owner Rick Hendrick said. “Today’s outcome reflects the facts, and we’re pleased the panel did the right thing by overturning the points penalty. It validated our concerns regarding unclear communication and other issues we raised. We look forward to focusing on the rest of our season, beginning with this weekend’s race at Richmond.”
About the author
Luken Glover arrived on the Frontstretch scene in 2020. He has been an avid NASCAR fan for the majority of his life, following in the footsteps of his grandfather, who used to help former team owner Junie Donlavey in his garage. Glover covers news for the site and took over "The Underdog House" column in 2021. In addition to being a college junior, his hobbies include volunteering at church, playing basketball and tennis, racing go-karts, and helping at his high school alma mater.
A daily email update (Monday through Friday) providing racing news, commentary, features, and information from Frontstretch.com
We hate spam. Your email address will not be sold or shared with anyone else.