NASCAR toughens penalty structure, could nullify playoff eligibility

·5 min read

NASCAR toughened its penalty structure for the upcoming season, and series officials could nullify a team’s eligibility for the playoffs if the infraction is severe enough.

NASCAR released its updated penalty structure for Cup, Xfinity and the Camping World Truck Series on Monday.

This follows what Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, said in December about the sanctioning body ramping up penalties.

“Penalties will be ratcheted up,” O’Donnell said in December at the Next Gen test at Charlotte Motor Speedway “We hope that we don’t have to do that, but we have to put everybody on notice that this is a culture shift.”

With Monday’s announcement, O’Donnell stated: “As we discussed during the test at Charlotte, and at length with teams over the offseason, the new deterrence model will be a culture shift for our industry.

“The car was a collaborative project, designed to emphasize performance at the track and the unrivaled abilities of our teams, drivers and pit crews. There will be strong penalties for any teams who run contrary to that design so the fans can focus on our drivers and the great racing expected from NASCAR.”

Here is the penalty structure for Cup, Xfinity and Trucks and what could the penalty options for NASCAR are:

Cup Series

L1 Penalty

Level 1 penalties may include but are not limited to:

  • Team sourced parts not meeting the NASCAR Rule Book not rising to a higher penalty level.

  • Failure to meet minimum weight after the race.

  • Failure to submit and receive approval of parts in accordance with the NASCAR Rule Book.

All L1 penalties found during the race or after the race shall result in disqualification.

L1 penalty options:

  • 20-75 point deduction

  • 1-10 playoff point deduction

  • 1-3 race suspension for team member(s) on team roster

  • 1 team event roster position subject to suspension

  • $25,000 – $100,000 fine

L2 Penalty

Level 2 penalties may include but are not limited to:

  • Modifications to Next Gen single source vendor supplied parts and/or assemblies not rising to an L3 penalty.

  • Failure to meet the engine seal requirements.

  • Major external engine parts, not part of the long block, that differ from what is required by the rules.

  • Anything that alters or affects the engine control system wiring harness and/or the certified engine control system wiring sub-harnesses.

  • Onboard electronics not approved in advance by NASCAR.

  • Violation of the Vehicle Testing Policy not rising to a higher Level.

All L2 penalties found during the race or after the race shall result in disqualification.

L2 penalty options:

  • 75-120 point deduction

  • 10-25 playoff point deduction

  • 4-6 race suspension for team member(s) on team roster

  • 1-2 team event roster positions subject to suspension

  • $100,000 – $250,000 fine

L3 Penalty

Level 3 penalties may include but are not limited to:

  • Counterfeiting or modifying Next Gen single source vendor supplied parts and/or assemblies.

  • Engine infractions (e.g. cubic inch displacement, compression ratio, long block assembly, and/or internal parts) not meeting the rules.

  • Engine performance enhancements (e.g. nitrous oxide, vacuum leaks, etc.).

  • ECU/EFI parts not being used as the rules permit.

  • Altering/modifying tires and/or fuel.

  • Violating the Vehicle Testing Policy.

All L3 penalties found during the race or after the race shall result in disqualification.

L3 penalty options:

  • 120-180 point deduction

  • 25-50 playoff point deduction

  • No playoff eligibility for driver and/or team owner

  • 6-race suspension for team member(s) on team roster

  • 1-2 team event roster positions subject to suspension

  • NASCAR could suspend the car number for one race

  • $250,000 – $500,000 fine

 

Xfinity Series

The Xfinity Series also updated its L1 and L2 penalties.

L1 Penalty (Xfinity)

Level 1 penalties may include but are not limited to:

  • Post-race incorrect ground clearance and/or body heights measurements.

  • Failure to meet minimum weight post-race.

  • Vehicles, equipment, and/or parts failing to meet specifications not rising to a higher penalty level.

All L1 penalties found during the race or after the race shall result in disqualification.

L1 penalty options (Xfinity):

  • 10-40 point deduction

  • 1-10 playoff point deduction

  • 1-2 race suspension for team member(s)

  • $5,000 – $20,000 fine

L2 Penalty (Xfinity)

Level 2 penalties may include but are not limited to:

  • Effecting, modifying, and/or altering the standard tires in any way, other than through authorized means.

  • A violation of the Vehicle Testing Policy or the Wind Tunnel Testing Policy.

  • Engine total cubic inch displacement above the maximum allowed or below the minimum required.

  • Compression ratio on any cylinder above the maximum allowed.

  • Parts or system configurations (Examples: rear suspension parts mounted and assembled in a manner so as to allow movement that should not otherwise be available, shock absorbers that show evidence of possible unauthorized modification or alteration or have the wrong internal components)

All L2 penalties found during the race or after the race shall result in disqualification.

L2 penalty options (Xfinity):

  • 75 point deduction

  • 10-20 playoff point deduction

  • 4-race suspension for team member(s)

  • $25,000 – $50,000 fine

 

Camping World Truck Series

L1 Penalty (Trucks)

Level 1 penalties may include but are not limited to:

  • Failure to meet minimum weight post-race.

  • Vehicles, equipment, and/or parts failing to meet specifications not rising to a higher penalty level.

  • Failure to submit and receive approval of parts in accordance with the NASCAR rules.

  • Parts, systems, devices, omissions, or part failures that could have an effect on the vehicle’s down force.

All L1 penalties found during the race or after the race shall result in disqualification.

L1 penalty options (Trucks):

  • 10-40 point deduction

  • 1-5 playoff point deduction

  • 1-2 race suspension for team member(s)

  • $5,000 – $20,000 fine

L2 Penalty (Trucks)

Level 2 penalties may include but are not limited to:

  • Effecting, modifying, and/or altering the standard tires in any way, other than through authorized means.

  • Failure to meet the engine seal requirements.

  • Onboard electronics not approved in advance by NASCAR.

All L2 penalties found during the race or after the race shall result in disqualification.

L2 penalty options (Trucks):

  • 75 point deduction

  • 5-10 playoff point deduction

  • 4-race suspension for team member(s)

  • $25,000 – $50,000 fine

Read more about NASCAR

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NASCAR toughens penalty structure, could nullify playoff eligibility originally appeared on NBCSports.com

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