Wednesday afternoon the story broke that the National Motorsports Appeal Panel has amended the penalties Hendrick Motorsports received following Phoenix.
The No. 5, No. 9, No. 24, and No. 48 teams will all win back their massive 100-points penalty as well as Larson, Byron, and Bowman getting their drivers points back. Chase Elliott was not docked any points due to him being out following a leg injury.
The $100,000 fine will still have to be paid off by crew chiefs Cliff Daniels, Alan Gustafson, Ryan “Rudy” Fugle, and Blake Harris and they will finish out their four-race suspension.
You Need To Know:
- Hendrick Motorsports was hit hard with this penalty following the Phoenix race. After Friday practice, the hood louvers on all four Hendrick Motorsports were confiscated and shipped back to NASCAR’s R&D Center. NASCAR’s claim was that the louvers had been modified and, per the NASCAR rule book, any modification to a part of the NextGen car is strictly forbidden.
- The harshness of the penalties drew a lot of backlash from within the Hendrick Motorsports bubble. The most outspoken member of the Hendrick brass was Chad Knaus. Knaus made the claim that the louvers wouldn’t fit the car so they had to manipulate them. He also stated that NASCAR needed to have higher standards for their single-source suppliers. With the drivers and owner points being refunded, Alex Bowman recaptures his spot atop the NASCAR Cup Series points standings.
- Anytime the governing body of NASCAR gets bested and one-upped, the fans are going to like it. This is no different. Hendrick Motorsports is a very popular team in NASCAR (partly because they house the sport’s Most Popular Driver) with a sea of fans. No doubt all of them are very happy with this decision made by the Motorsports Appeal Panel. As for the nay-sayers, it’s the same preferential treatment claim Hendrick Motorsports has always gotten.
It is also worth noting that Kaulig Racing’s No. 31 team was hammered hard with the exact same penalties for similar circumstances. With this low-key victory for HMS, one would have to believe that Matt Kaulig is feeling pretty good about his own appeal chances. A date for the appeal has yet to be set.
The Main Characters
While not technically winning the appeal, this might as well be a victory of Hendrick Motorsports. While their crew chiefs are still gone for a couple of more races and will soon be $100,000 lighter, the team themselves are in a much better position when it comes to points.
Alex Bowman regains his stripped points lead and now three of their four drivers are safely in the playoffs.
Around The Garage
The amendment of the penalties didn’t just affect HMS. Front Row Motorsports driver, Todd Gilliland, now needs to make some points up.
From The Officials
The NASCAR officials released a statement of their own. They’re happy the appeals panel agreed that their reasoning for the penalty was sound but come off as very displeased with the entirety of it not being upheld.
In The Stands
HMS never legal again was partying a little to early. NASCAR just ruined his day with this news. Sorry you ruined your party and your family left, bro.
Carl, hold the wheezer. who is NOT a Hendrick fan is annoyed by this. However, he also agrees that this was the correct call.
Dusty calls for Haley and Kaulig to get their points back.
LockDown just knows the look HMS execs gave NASCAR after the appeal meeting…
Jacob aka ShowmanTheBowman who is not at all an Alex Bowman fan is happy Bowman has recaptured his well-deserved points lead.
Doug Lvey points out that if Kaulig doesn’t get the same treatment whenever their appeals meeting is, it shows that the appeals panel favors HMS over other smaller teams.
carnationTM theorizes that Hendrick paid off NASCAR.
AWG likes that the drivers are getting their points back. Should drivers be penalized for the “creativity” of their crew chiefs?
Kathleen smells a rat…
On Your Screen
Eric Estepp, host of Out of the Groove, cannot believe his eyes! I’m sure we’ll have a full video breakdown soon!
DannyB’s driver, Alex Bowman, regains the points lead! But perhaps what’s most respectable is that he rarely lets that bias out when creating content. He thinks this was the right call as drivers should not be punished for the mistakes of their crew.
DennyDelivers from YouTube knows RFK, Front Row, and SHR feel cheated…
Jett Kraus, host of JettMDK also can’t believe it.
Here is the latest episode of OOTG. Eric breaks the whole thing down.
From The Pressbox
Daily Downforce contributor, Dale Tanhardt, had these points to bring up.
Bob Pockrass breaks that Bowman the Showman has recaptured the points lead.
Matt Weaver comments on this “big win”.
Jeff Gluck shares the statements released by NASCAR and HMS.
Pete Pistone wants someone to make it make sense!
The NASCAR Guy pretty much sums up this appeal meeting…
Couch Racer points out the flawed logic of the decision.
Jeff Gluck comes back to break down the appeals process for confused fans.
FOX Sports’ Bob Pockrass tweets the updated points standings for the drivers and the owners.
Wow. We at the Daily Downforce were definitely not expecting that. What are your thoughts? Was this the right call or was NASCAR right from the beginning? Let us know where you shake out in all of this mess!