The 5-time Sprint Cup Champion has had much better times than the last 14 days. Following a 42nd place finish due to being involved in a massive wreck on the 2nd lap of Monday nights Daytona 500, Jimmie Johnson found out yesterday that he will be docked 25 pts in the Sprint Cup standings following a pre-500 inspection.
Johnson now finds himself in the very unfamiliar position of last place in the pts standings. In addition to Johnson’s penalty, his crew chief Chad Knaus and car chief Ron Malec, have been suspended for six races. Johnson enters this weekends race at -23 pts. Knaus was levied with a $100,000 fine as well. This is Knaus’ 5th suspension, though one of the previous suspension was overturned. Hendrick Motorsports plans to appeal this ruling. While the appeal process happens, Knaus and Malec will be allowed to continue to work.
“Our organization respects NASCAR and the way the sanctioning body governs our sport,” team owner Rick Hendrick said. “In this case, though, the system broke down, and we will voice our concerns through the appeals process.”
NASCAR found a an illegal “C-post”-a piece of sheet metal that connects the roof to the rear quarter panel. It was deemed by NASCAR to be modified in a way that wasn’t permitted in the rule book.
The argument that Hendricks will use is that this is the same car that was used at last year at Daytona as well as Talladega. The only “modification” to the car was a new paint job.
H/T Florida Times Union