Stewart-Haas Racing responds to No. 4 team penalty

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Stewart-Haas Racing has released a statement about the penalty handed down to Kevin Harvick and the No. 4 team.

- Penalties coming down following Las Vegas for the winner, Kevin Harvick, in that 4 team. Here's the list, they lose 20 driver and owner points. He was the championship leader, that's not a huge deal til we get toward the end of the regular season. See where he is as possibly a winner of the regular season championship and what that would mean to playoff points.

And speaking of playoff points, he got the win. He won both stages. That equals 7 playoff points. All of those are now gone.

Crew chief Rodney Childers, he will stay with the team, but he's been fined $50,000. Two-race suspension for the car chief. That is Robert "Cheddar" Smith.

But again, the big deal is those playoff points. And we look at the updated standings, Harvick was the leader. He goes from first to third, minus 17 behind Joey Logano, who now jumps up to the top spot.

But go over to the playoff points. Instead of 13, he now has 6. That could be really, really big as Kevin Harvick tries to run down his second championship coming up later this season.

- NASCAR did announce that they were going to penalize the number four team of Stewart-Haas racing for the infractions following the Las Vegas race this past weekend. Rodney Childers has said that it was a broken brace in that rear window.

SHR has released a statement, came out from Greg Zipadelli who is the vice president of competition, saying this, "Late today, NASCAR made us aware of a penalty they're imposing on our number four 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 that penalty."

- So, Drew, you win in Atlanta, OK, and now basically, you got everything in front of you. And the one thing you want to do is go get as many points as you can and get as many playoff points as you can.

- Yeah.

- How much of what we saw on Sunday could be a product of, let's take a little bit of a risk, and see if we can go out and make something happen? Is that part of the equation here?

- It could be. You know, I think they probably took a risk during practice with set up stuff. And you can definitely take risks with parts at this point of the season for the four car, and they can continue to do that. That's the luxury of getting a win early in the season.

Hopefully they don't have these issues, and hopefully whatever they had that broke or bent withstands what it needs to do. But I'm sure they could take a chance.

- Tough place for the driver, too, right? Because I mean, we're going into Phoenix, Kevin Harvick's got all this good juju going, and then now he's got to answer these questions.

- And I don't think we need to give Kevin any more motivation going into Phoenix.

- That's a good point too.

- That could be-

- Yeah, Phoenix of all places.

- That could spell trouble, but I think it's a team's--

- Poke the bear.

- Yeah, no, we don't need to do that. But it's a team's position to try to find these gray areas and make speed. And they have that win in their pocket, they're going to the playoffs, so they're going to be aggressive.

But at the same time, it's NASCAR's position to slap the hands of the crew chiefs and these competition directors that are trying to find speed and trying to work around. We've got a new rule book this year, so I think NASCAR made a statement and I'm glad they did.