The No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing team has been issued an L1-level penalty following driver Kevin Harvick’s win Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway, an infraction that carries major championship implications in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Additionally, both crew chief Rodney Childers and car chief Robert Smith have been suspended for the next two races – ISM Raceway at Phoenix and the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Childers also has been fined $75,000.
The team has the right to appeal the penalty to the NASCAR Motorsports Appeals Panel. There was no immediate word from SHR officials if they planned to do so.
The team violated Section 20.4.12 of the NASCAR Rule Book that is specific to spoilers. Spoilers must be used exactly as supplied from the manufacturer and not altered. The infraction was discovered in post-race tear down at the NASCAR Research & Development Center.
As a result, Harvick has been docked 40 driver points and the team loses 40 owner points as well. Harvick’s win at Texas no longer automatically qualifies the team for the Championship 4 in Miami. He will enter this weekend’s Round of 8 finale fourth among eight playoff drivers in the standings, three points above the cutline – should there be a tie for the final transfer spot, Harvick cannot use the Texas win in the tiebreaking procedure.
Source: NASCAR / NASCAR.com
SHR VP Greg Zipadelli: "We work tirelessly across every inch of our racecars to create speed and, unfortunately, NASCAR determined we ventured into an area not accommodated by its rule book. We will not appeal the penalty. Instead, we will direct our immediate focus to this weekend's event in Phoenix and control our destiny on the race track."
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