The Ruling: William Byron Gets Needed Points Break from Appeals Panel

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Byron Gets Needed Points Break from Appeals PanelIcon Sportswire - Getty Images

William Byron has new life in the NASCAR Cup Playoffs after the National Motorsports Appeals Panel on Thursday overturned at least part of his penalty for actions during the NASCAR Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway.

Photo credit: Icon Sportswire - Getty Images
Photo credit: Icon Sportswire - Getty Images

On Sept. 27, Byron was fined $50,000 and hit with a loss of 50 driver and owner points for intentionally ramming Denny Hamlin in what was determined to be a breach of conduct.

NASCAR bylaws state that member actions, including "intentionally wrecking another vehicle," can result in a loss of 25-50 driver and team owner points and/or $50,0000-$100,000 fine and/or suspension.

The appeals board raised original fine to $100,000 but eliminated the points part of the penalty equation. With the 25 points added back to Byron's ledger, the Hendrick Motorsports driver goes from 10th to seventh in NASCAR Cup Playoff standings, 14 points clear of the cutline.

The playoff field will be trimmed from 12 to eight following Sunday's race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval.

Here's the text of Thursday's ruling:

The National Motorsports Appeals Panel today heard and considered an appeal of a Behavioral penalty issued on Sept. 27, 2022 to driver William Byron and team owner Rick Hendrick in the NASCAR Cup Series.

The penalty concerns the following section in the 2022 NASCAR Rule Book: Section 4.3 NASCAR Member Conduct and 4.4 NASCAR Member Code of Conduct Penalty Options and Guidelines. The penalties issued were a $50,000 fine to Byron and the loss of 25 championship driver and owner points.

Upon hearing the testimony, the decisions of the National Motorsports Appeals Panel are:

1. That the Appellants violated the Rule(s) set forth in the Penalty Notice.

2. That the Panel amends the original penalty assessed by NASCAR to read: $100,000 fine for William Byron and no loss of NASCAR Cup Series Championship Team Owner or Driver points.

The Appeals Panel members for this hearing:

The Appellants have the right to appeal the decision of the National Motorsports Appeals Panel to the National Motorsports Final Appeals Officer in accordance with the NASCAR Rule Book.

Updated NASCAR Points Standings

(Playoff field will be cut to eight after Sunday's race at Charlotte)

  1. *Chase Elliott 3,103

  2. Ryan Blaney 3,101

  3. Ross Chastain 3,097

  4. Denny Hamlin 3,090

  5. Joey Logano 3,087

  6. Kyle Larson 3,087

  7. William Byron 3083

  8. Daniel Suarez 3,081

  9. Chase Briscoe 3,069

  10. Austin Cindric 3,069

  11. Christopher Bell 3,036

  12. Alex Bowman 3,015