Appeal date of May 8 set for Kenseth's team

Set Text Size SmallSet Text Size MediumSet Text Size LargeSet Text Size X-Large
Updated: 4/29/2013 9:33 pm

Charlotte, NC (Sports Network) - The National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel will hear Joe Gibbs Racing's appeal on May 8 for severe penalties assessed by NASCAR to Matt Kenseth's No. 20 Sprint Cup Series team for an illegal engine used at Kansas Speedway.

JGR's appeal will be heard by a three-member committee, and it will be conducted at NASCAR's Research and Development Center in Concord, N.C. NASCAR handed down penalties to the No. 20 team last Wednesday after officials found one of the connecting rods on the engine used in Kenseth's race-winning Toyota Camry on April 21 at Kansas did not meet the minimum connecting rod weight. The violation was discovered during a secondary post-race inspection of his engine at the R&D center.

Kenseth was penalized with a loss of 50 points. His crew chief, Jason Ratcliff, had been fined $200,000, suspended from NASCAR competition for six points-paying races, as well as next month's all-star event (non-points), and placed on probation until Dec. 31. Car owner Joe Gibbs was docked 50 points as well.

Furthermore, Kenseth's win at Kansas will not earn him bonus points toward eligibility and seeding for this year's Chase for the Sprint Cup championship. His victory there is not credited towards the eligibility for a driver wild card position in the playoffs. He was also stripped of his pole win at Kansas.

The penalty included the owner's license for the No. 20 car being suspended until the completion of the next six point races, making the team ineligible to receive championship car owner points during that period of time. A loss of five NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Manufacturer Championship points was assessed to the team.

JGR will not dispute the engine violation during the appeal, but will argue that NASCAR's penalties for the infraction were too severe.

"What we're going to appeal is the severity of the penalties," Gibbs said during a press conference last Friday at Richmond International Raceway. "In looking at that motor and where all the connecting rods were placed and the weight of all the connecting rods, when you have motor experts look at it, basically what they would say is there is no advantage to having that one light rod in that motor. That's one thing that is very important to me is the intent here was not to get an unfair advantage in any way."

Kenseth called the penalties "grossly unfair" and "borderline shameful."

Toyota Racing Development, which is the engine supplier for JGR, took full responsibility for the engine issue and noted JGR is not involved in the process of selecting parts or assembling engines for its cars.

NASCAR said in its announcement of the penalties that "only magnetic steel connecting rods with a minimum weight of 525.0 grams will be permitted; connecting rod failed to meet the minimum connecting rod weight." The unapproved rod weighed in roughly three grams under the legal limit.

"It's a part that didn't meet spec," NASCAR vice president of competition Robin Pemberton said at Richmond. "It's not a gray area. There are numbers in the books. If you look at numbers in the books and what's going on in the garage area and across our national series, those numbers for a connecting rod have been in the book since around the time we went to a single-engine rule, which is probably 12 years ago."

Since JGR's appeal date is scheduled for next week, Ratcliff will be allowed to participate in this coming weekend's race activities at Talladega Superspeedway.

Meanwhile, the appeals panel will hear Penske Racing's argument of its penalties on Wednesday. NASCAR issued hefty penalties to both Penske teams after officials discovered unapproved suspension systems and components on Brad Keselowski's No. 2 car and Joey Logano's No. 22 car during inspection before the start of the April 13 race at Texas Motor Speedway.

Latest Sports Photos
Latest Sports Photos
0 Votes
a skydiver was injured when attempting to land in a pre game show at the Lookouts opening game on 4/3/2014

0 Votes
SEC Champions Alabama created by artist Ben Teeter S/N C.O.A. available for the dedicated Alabama fan!

1 Vote
first catch of the season looks like a good year

0 Votes
Gina McLeroy Spring City, TN

0 Votes
Our Son Brandon McLeroy MTSU Football 2011 Gina McLeroy Spring City TN

1 Vote
this is James Howard telling Gracie what to do.

0 Votes
Riverbend fun!

0 Votes
I nees a four letter word for the outside layer of a tree.

0 Votes
Cameron is a rising athlete. He has a God given talent for the game of football. This picture is of him stopping the ball carrier in our game in the ...

1 Vote
Our Lookout Valley 9/10 year old team went to a tournament in Knoxville called The Battle of the Rocky Top. They went throught the tournament undefeated and won the championship ...
Featured Partners
Experience Baylor summer camp - a 70 year tradition of summer fun and adventure. What are you waiting for? Make the most of summer by signing up today!
Get started at $79.99 a month for 12 months. Plus, get a $75 VISA® Prepaid card.
Register now for St. Nicholas summer camp whose mission & purpose is to provide a fun learning experience for children, developing physical, cultural, social and intellectual abilities.
Click here to enter for your chance to win a Bojangles Breakfast Combo. Then, watch WDEF News 12 This Morning for daily winner announcements!
Supermarket Guru
From The Archives
Scenic City Roots
Through Irish Eyes
Brand News
Prime Mashup
What's Trending
Stay Connected with WDEF News 12
Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.