NASCAR punishes Kenseth for failing post-race inspection
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — NASCAR has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to engines, tires and fuel on a race car. Anything even slightly improper is dealt with swiftly and severely. NASCAR always throws the book at offenders.
Matt Kenseth and Joe Gibbs Racing were no exception, getting hit with one of the largest penalties in NASCAR history Wednesday after the engine from Kenseth's race-winning car at Kansas failed a post-race inspection. The team had nothing to do with the error, and manufacturer Toyota immediately accepted responsibility for one of eight connecting rods failing to meet the minimum weight requirement by 3 grams — less than an empty envelope.
“We take full responsibility for this issue with the engine. JGR is not involved in the process of selecting parts or assembling the Cup Series engines,” Toyota Racing Development President Lee White said.
Kenseth was stripped of everything but the trophy from Sunday's win at Kansas.
He was docked 50 driver points in the standings — he earned only 48 points for the victory — and NASCAR also erased the three bonus points he earned for the win that would have been applied in seeding for the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.
In addition, the victory will not be credited toward his eligibility for a wild-card berth in the Chase.