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NASCAR Cup: penalties increased in attempt to curb suspension issue

By AMANDA VINCENT

NASCAR has upped its penalties for a rear-suspension-related rule violation that has been committed multiple times in 2017, elevating the penalties to the maximum allowable for an L1-level violation.

Now, violation of section 20.14.2 Suspension I-4 of the NASCAR rule book will carry penalties including the loss of 40 driver and car owner points, a $75,000 fine and three-race suspension for the crew chief, a three-race suspension for the car chief and the race finish being classified as “encumbered” in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. The corresponding fine with be $40,000 in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. The other penalties will be the same.

An “encumbered” win means a driver doesn’t receive playoff benefits from that win — no playoff points and the win can’t be counted on to secure a playoff spot. The driver does, though, retain the win in other respects.

The new penalties are an increase from a $50,000 fine ($25,000 in the Xfinity Series), a two-race suspension for the crew chief, and the “encumbered” classification.

Denny Hamlin swept the Darlington (S.C.) Raceway weekend that culminated in the Sept. 3 running of the Bojangles’ Southern 500, winning both Cup and Xfinity series races there. Both wins were “encumbered,” as the cars Hamlin drove in those two races both were in violation of the aforementioned rear-suspension rule. The violations were discovered in teardowns at the NASCAR Research & Development Center in Concord, N.C.

The Xfinity Series win at Darlington was the second series win for Hamlin in 2017 that wound up being classified as “encumbered” by NASCAR. Also, Joey Logano’s Cup Series win at Richmond (Va.) Raceway earlier this season was classified as “encumbered” for the same rule violation. After finishing second to Hamlin in the Xfinity race at Darlington, Logano’s car in that series, also was found to be in violation of the same rule.

Follow Auto Racing Daily on Twitter @AutoRacingDaily or like Auto Racing Daily on Facebook (facebook.com/autorcngdaily). Amanda’s also on Twitter @NASCARexaminer and has a fan/like page on Facebook (facebook.com/nascarexaminer)

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Posted by on September 9, 2017. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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