The rundown: Teams that have been penalized or warned in the Chase

Martin Truex Jr. (78) had trouble getting through NASCAR inspection at Dover on Oct. 4.

Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Sept. 23

The No. 15 team of Michael Waltrip Racing’s Clint Bowyer has been penalized for an infraction that occurred during opening-day inspection on Sept. 18. This is a P4 level penalty on NASCAR’s six-tier penalty deterrence system. As a result of the infraction, crew chief Billy Scott has been fined $75,000, suspended for the next three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship events and placed on NASCAR probation for six months following the issue of suspension.

Bowyer, one of 16 drivers in the Chase, has been stripped of 25 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Driver points, while team owner Rob Kauffman has been penalized 25 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Owner points. NASCAR has requested to the Appeals Administrator of the National Motorsports Appeals Panel that the appeals process described in the rule book be expedited.

"Michael Waltrip Racing respectfully disagrees with today’s penalties and plans to immediately appeal," the team said in a statement. "MWR has made mistakes in the past, but we feel we are correct in this instance. We look forward to the opportunity to present our case to the appeals committee and have no further public comment until the process is completed."

Oct. 1

NASCAR announced that the sanctioning body has issued warnings to teams in each of the three major series for issues in technical inspection last weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway or Kentucky Speedway.

On the Sprint Cup side, the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing team of Chase driver Kevin Harvick was hit with two warnings and will be held out of practice 15 minutes this weekend at Dover for failing to pass NASCAR’s LASER Inspection Platform three times in pre-qualifying inspection and twice in pre-race inspection.

The No. 2 Team Penske team of Chase driver Brad Keselowski and the No. 17 Roush Fenway Racing team of Ricky Stenhouse Jr. were each issued a written warning for flunking qualifying inspection once.

Meanwhile, the teams of Alex Bowman and Timmy Hill will be held out of practice for 15 minutes at Dover for arriving late to race inspection and qualifying inspection, respectively.

Busted! 15 memorable cheating scandals in NASCAR

Oct. 7

NASCAR announced that Furniture Row Racing crew chief Cole Pearn has been placed on probation through Dec. 31 for an infraction that occurred prior to Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series race at Dover International Speedway. 

The team was hit with a P2 level penalty (Sections 12.1; 20.4b; 20.4.2a; 12.5.3.2.2). 

While the No. 78 Chevrolet initially passed NASCAR’s pre-race technical inspection, an official noticed the right rear quarter panel was bowed out on pit road. The car was sent back to the Sprint Cup garage in order to go through inspection an additional time. Officials made the team correct the issue and Truex was sent to the rear of the field for the start of the AAA 400. At the time, NASCAR indicated no additional penalties would follow. 

Truex was able to overcome the setback of starting 43rd on the field, finishing the day 11th and advancing to the Contender Round of the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

Oct. 8

The teams of Stewart-Haas Racing teammates Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart were both handed written warnings for discrepancies with the rear bumper tubing round on their cars in pre-race inspection.

Busch is a Chase a driver while Stewart, the co-owner of SHR, is not.

Meanwhile, the teams of SHR driver and Dover winner Kevin Harvick and driver Michael McDowell will be held 15 minutes of practice this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway for infractions on previous race weekends.

LATEST FROM NASCAR

Harvick, the reigning Sprint Cup champion, is being held after his team was hit with two warnings for failing to pass NASCAR’s LASER Inspection Platform three times in pre-qualifying inspection and twice in pre-race inspection at New Hampshire two weekends ago.

Oct. 14

NASCAR announced that the sanctioning body has issued warnings to several teams — including five in the Chase for the Sprint Cup — following last weekend’s Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Most impacted are Chase driver Brad Keselowski and non-Chase driver Tony Stewart who will lose their pit selections for Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway as a result of their respective teams accumulating four written warnings.

In streamlining its warning system back in August, NASCAR ruled that every fourth warning a team receives would result in automatic loss of pit selection at the next event.

Keselowski’s No. 2 Team Penske team received its latest warning for violating Section 20.20.a (installation of components and/or modifications of existing components to affect the aerodynamic properties of the vehicle will be not be permitted) and Section 12.5.3.1.1.c (installation of additional components and/or modifications of existing components that affect the aerodynamic properties of the vehicle that are not explicitly permitted) of the NASCAR rule book.

The championship-eligible team of Charlotte race winner Joey Logano and the non-Chase team of the Wood Brothers’ Ryan Blaney received warnings for the same infractions as Keselowski’s team.

Stewart’s team received three warnings stemming from Charlotte — one for failing pre-race inspection templates too many times, one for failing pre-qualifying inspection too many times, and one for an infraction related to the driver-adjusted track bar. In addition to losing pit selection, Stewart will serve a 15-minute practice deduction at Kansas.

Other teams issued warnings stemming from Charlotte include those of Chase driver Jeff Gordon (failing pre-qualifying inspection too many times) and Chase drivers Kevin Harvick and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (both for failing pre-race inspection too many times).

The team of non-Chase driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was warned for failing pre-race inspection too many times, while the team of non-Chaser Clint Bowyer received two warnings — one for failing pre-race inspection too many times, and one for failing pre-race inspection templates too many times.

NASCAR handed out warnings to teams for issues discovered in technical inspection at Kansas Speedway, where the Sprint Cup Series competed in Race No. 2 of three in the Chase Contender Round.

Of the four teams issued a warning, only one — the Hendrick Motorsports team of driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. — is in the Chase.

The non-Chase team of driver Alex Bowman was given a warning for likewise flunking pre-race inspection twice.

The No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing team of part-time Sprint Cup driver Ryan Blaney was hit with a warning for failing to comply with Section 10.7.2.b of the NASCAR rulebook — not following a NASCAR directive by having covers over some of their suspension parts in the garage.

This is the second consecutive week that NASCAR has issued a written warning to the teams of Earnhardt and Blaney.

In streamlining its warning system back in August, NASCAR ruled that every fourth warning a team receives would result in automatic loss of pit selection at the next event.