NASCAR confiscated the rear spoiler of Austin Dillon; They handed out a fine, suspension and point penalty this week
In between the first and second practice session last weekend at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR added a wicker to the rear spoiler. This was in addition to the 9 inch spoiler which was already new for the event since the previous season.
Richard Childress Racing unhooked the decklid of the #3 machine. They then added Bondo and was sanding it in preparation for NASCAR inspection. Ahead of qualifying at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR confiscated the rear decklid and spoiler for Austin Dillon.
NASCAR took issue with the Bondo specifically. But, the team claimed they didn’t have a decklid template at the shop. They were just working to bring it closer to the specs of the rulebook.
“We took the deck lid off and we’re over there sanding the deck lid to make sure the template is going to fit for today,” #3 crew chief Danny Stockman said after the spoiler was confiscated.
The team then installed a stock rear decklid and took to NASCAR inspection. After passing inspection, they grabbed to pole by more than a tenth of a second.
NASCAR penalizes Austin Dillon
On Tuesday, Austin Dillon and the #3 team were announced as the first recipient of an L1 penalty in 2019. Crew chief Danny Stockman Jr. has been fined $25,000. Car chief Gregory Ebert was suspended for this weekend at Dover.
In addition, the #3 team was also docked 10 owner and driver points.
14 penalties have been issued so far in 2019. 13 of those were safety violations (lug nuts). Austin Dillon is the first car that has been handed an L1 penalty.
In the 2018 season, 20 L1 penalties were handed out in the MENCS at season’s end. The penalties totaled $610,000. Kevin Harvick alone was handed 4 of the 20.
Richard Childress on the spoiler penalty
This week, the team owner commented on the infraction:
“We deserved it. I call it a stupid mistake on our guys part,” Richard Childress said via ‘Tradin Paint’ on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio.
“They took a decklid off one of the cars from Daytona before this had been put in there. They took it off to try and take a lot of it out if it. and they got caught.”
“It was their own fault. We deserve the penalty.”
“We’re not going to go back and protest it. It was just a stupid mistake on our part. We put a stock decklid on it and still sat on the pole. It was caught before that.”
“It was just something that should have never happened in our organization. I apologize to our fans, our sponsors and everybody. We just made kind of a boo boo there,” the owner of Richard Childress Racing concluded.