NASCAR hits Keselowski, Logano teams hard

The SportsXchange

NASCAR is making Penske Racing teammates Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano pay the price for technical violations with their cars that were uncovered before the start of the Sprint Cup's NRA 500 on Saturday night at Texas Motor Speedway.

Each driver was stripped of 25 points in the championships standings and their teams were hit with suspensions that included both crew chiefs, NASCAR announced Wednesday.

Paul Wolfe, Keselowski's crew chief Paul Wolfe, was fined $100,000 and suspended for the next six races. Car chief Jerry Kelley, team engineer Brian Wilson and Penske competition director Travis Geisler also were suspended for six races

Todd Gordon, Logano's crew chief, received the same $100,000 fine and six-week suspension. Car chief Raymond Fox and team engineer Samuel Stanley also were suspended for six weeks.

In addition, the Penske team members were placed on probation until Dec. 31.

Martin Truex Jr. also was penalized for his car being too low after Saturday's race at Texas, losing six championship points while crew chief Chad Johnston was fined $25,000 and placed on probation through June 5.

The Penske penalties resulted from the rear-end housings failing pre-race inspection. The issue stemmed from NASCAR-mandated approval of the suspension systems and its parts.

Both cars barely made the required changes in time for the green flag. Logano ended up at the rear of the field at the start.

After the points are deducted, the defending series champion Kewelowski drops from second in the Sprint Cup standings to fifth, 34 points behind leader Jimmie Johnson. Logano falls from ninth to 15th.

Penske Racing said in a statement that it plans to appeal the sanctions. The team can continue to work until the appeal his heard, but the points deductions are effective immediately.

"Penske Racing received communication today from NASCAR regarding penalties they have issued against the No. 2 and No. 22 teams. Penske Racing will appeal utilizing the appropriate NASCAR process. We have no further comment at this time."

Truex's team, Michael Waltrip Racing, won't appeal its penalty after Truex finished second in the race behind Kyle Busch.

"Michael Waltrip Racing is sensitive to working within the guidelines of NASCAR policy," Waltrip said in a statement. "This infraction clearly occurred as a result of a malfunction caused by race conditions. Therefore, we will not appeal. We thank NASCAR for providing a fair and equitable platform for all of its competitors and respect its decisions."
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