Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick’s assured place within the NASCAR Cup Collection championship shootout at Homestead has been misplaced attributable to a L1 penalty incurred at Texas Motor Speedway.
On Wednesday NASCAR introduced that Harvick and his #Four SHR crew have been hit with a penalty of 40 driver and proprietor factors for a spoiler infraction.
Harvick’s Texas win was dominated as ‘encumbered’, which implies it can not depend in direction of a spot within the championship’s ‘remaining 4’.
A NASCAR assertion mentioned: “The crew violated Part 20.4.12 of the NASCAR Rule E-book that’s particular to spoilers.
“Spoilers should be used precisely as provided from the producer and never altered.
“The infraction was found in post-race tear down on the NASCAR Analysis & Growth Centre.”
Harvick’s crew chief Rodney Childers and automobile chief Robert Smith have additionally been suspended for the following two races at Phoenix and Homestead, including an additional blow to his championship hopes, with Childers additionally fined.
The factors deduction drops Harvick to fourth within the playoff standings, which implies he can nonetheless qualify for the title decider by holding that place or by successful at this weekend’s Phoenix race.
Harvick’s margin over SHR team-mate Kurt Busch in fifth place is simply three factors.
SHR mentioned it might not attraction the penalty.
“We work tirelessly throughout each inch of our racecars to create pace and, sadly, NASCAR decided we ventured into an space not accommodated by its rulebook,” mentioned vice chairman of competiti Greg Zipadelli.
“We is not going to attraction the penalty. As an alternative, we’ll direct our speedy focus to this weekend’s occasion in Phoenix and management our future on the racetrack.”
Tony Gibson will function Harvick’s interim crew chief for the following two weeks and Nick DeFazio will function interim automobile chief.
Harvick has already been hit with an L1 penalty this 12 months, after a rear-window infraction at Las Vegas that led to the motive force criticising NASCAR’s method to penalties.
NASCAR additionally introduced two different L1 penalties on Wednesday following the Texas race, with runner-up Ryan Blaney and his #12 Penske crew hit with a penalty of 20 driver and proprietor factors.
Joe Gibbs Racing’s Erik Jones and his crew have additionally obtained the identical punishment.
The drivers and groups will even be with out their automobile chiefs for the following two races, with their crew chiefs fined.
Neither driver is in playoff competition.
Joey Logano is now the one driver locked right into a title shootout spot because of his Martinsville win.
Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr are in robust positions through their factors tallies, with Kurt Busch, Chase Elliott, Aric Almirola and Clint Bowyer the opposite drivers nonetheless within the hunt.
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