Two Hendrick Motorsports cars have been hit with an L-1 level penalty Thursday for engine allocation infractions coming off the back of the New Hampshire round of the championship last weekend. Both the No. 9 of Chase Elliott and the No. 48 of Alex Bowman were found in violation of NASCAR’s Rule Book under section 20.6.1.e. Due to the violations, both cars and teams will be issued deductions of 25 owner points and 25 drivers points. Crew chiefs Alan Gustafson and Greg Ives were also fined $50,000. One race suspensions were also issued for Hendrick Motorsports executive vice president and general manager Jeff Andrews, as well as Scott Maxim, the organization’s director or track engine support.
In simpler terms, once the engine is sealed by NASCAR, and used in a particular car, that engine cannot be used in another car. Hendrick Motorsports released a statement Thursday stating, “Due to an administrative error, one of our sealed engines assigned to the No. 9 car was unintentionally allocated to our No. 48 team at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Although the engine passed technical inspection and absolutely no competitive advantage was gained, we acknowledge NASCAR’s process was not followed correctly in this instance. The rules regarding the assignment of sealed engines are clear, and we understand and respect their decision to issue a penalty. We apologize for the mistake and have taken steps to ensure it will not be repeated.”
While the penalty did not affect the current standing of Alex Bowman’s No. 48, the penalty dropped Chase Elliott from fifth to sixth in the series standings. With four races remaining in the regular season, Hendrick Motorsports holds the record for the most wins by an organization this season with ten. The next round of the championship at Watkins Glen International has been won by the No. 9 of Chase Elliott twice in a row in 2018 and 2019.
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