Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Kevin Harvick’s Car Chief Suspended Following Las Vegas Penalty
For the second straight week in a row, Kevin Harvick is facing a penalty from NASCAR after winning a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event.
Although last week was a simple $10,000 fine for crew chief Rodney Childers due to a loose lug nut, this one is much more severe after a pair of violations were found during teardown at the NASCAR R&D center.
According to the sanctioning body, the No. 4 Ford was in violation of Sections 18.104.22.168 (dealing with rear window support) and 20.4.18 (rocker panel extensions). The brace that supports the rear window had failed, not keeping the glass rigid in all directions as specified in the rules, and the rocket panel extension was not aluminum.
The infraction has been widely discussed on social media throughout the past couple of days since the Pennzoil 400, and was even talked about during the event by other competitors.
As a result, the seven playoff points Harvick earned towards the victory will not be eligible for him to use in the playoffs beginning in September. He remains qualified for the post-season, though, as a result of the win at Atlanta a week prior though.
Additionally, Childers was fined $50,000, with car chief Robert Smith suspended for two events, as well as having 20 regular season driver and owner points taken away. While it may seem pointless to strip those points, the driver who has the most before the playoff reset gets a bonus 15 playoff points.
As with any penalty, the team does have an opportunity to appeal to the National Motorsports Appeals Panel. So far, Stewart-Haas Racing has only released a simple statement saying, “Late today, NASCAR made us aware of a penalty they’re imposing on our No. 4 Cup Series team. We’re going to take the time and evaluate our options, and we plan to continue dialogue with NASCAR to fully understand the rationale behind the penalty.”
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