NASCAR sheds light on Kevin Harvick's illegal spoiler penalty

Ruben Hill
November 9, 2018

Kevin Harvick is "no longer locked into vying for the NASCAR Cup Series championship as his race-winning auto from Texas was found to have an illegal spoiler during technical inspection", ESPN reported.

The spoilers, Miller said, are purchased from a single source supplier and positioned on the vehicle. That leaves Harvick to fight for his playoff life at Phoenix this weekend with backup crew chief Tony Gibson.

"Certainly points, the deterrence model, fines, suspensions".

- A NASCAR inspector at the track had noticed something "a little suspicious" about the spoiler at the track, Miller said. The infraction was discovered during the usual post-race tear down at NASCAR's Research & Development Center. An inspector at Texas thought the spoiler looked off, but Miller said it had to be removed from the vehicle.

- Due to the No. 4 team's infraction, Miller said NASCAR will now be unbolting every spoiler and examining them during at-track inspection for the final two races.

"This met the shape, and it met the height, and we don't check at track the offset of the spoiler because it's supposed to be a standard part that bolts to a standard deck lid", Miller said. "The teams should really be bringing legal cars to the racetrack and we shouldn't have to do that inspection all the time".

-Miller made it clear NASCAR is tiring of teams pushing the limits and is ready for a further crackdown. "It's getting borderline ridiculous". For one thing, NASCAR is considering disqualifying illegal cars next season, and officials will discuss the possibility during the offseason. Once that happened, it was "100 percent, as black and white as it gets", Miller said.

Now Harvick's team has been rocked by a penalty that may change the composition of the final four drivers racing for the title. "We are hoping we can change the culture to where we don't have to play this cat-and-mouse game with the teams all the time", he said.

"We'll just ramp up the intensity of keeping people with eyes on those cars throughout the weekend and scrutinize those cars heavily, both before and after the race", he said. However, upon further inspection, NASCAR ruled the win illegitimate and stripped Harvick of the win and the automatic playoff advancement that comes with it.

Miller said if there is an issue in next weekend's championship race in Miami, the matter will be dealt with that night.

NASCAR announced the mistake during the race and said Monday it has updated its procedures to prevent a similar mistake moving forward. "We feel good about the process".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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