NASCAR issues heavy penalties to Harvick team, suspends Childers, and crew chief in Truck series

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA - AUGUST 14: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Mobil 1 Ford, and crew chief Rodney Childers celebrate in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Cup Series Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond Raceway on August 14, 2022 in Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

NASCAR came down hard on No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing team Wednesday issuing L2-level penalties for an unapproved modification of a single-source part.

The infraction falls under the heading of Sections 14.1 (vehicle assembly) and 14.5 (body), resulted in a 100-point penalty for both driver Kevin Harvick and the No. 4 SHR team in their respective Cup Series points standings. In addition, crew chief Rodney Childers was fined $100,000 and suspended from the next four Cup Series events.

The No. 4 Ford — which Harvick raced to a 29th-place finish in last Sunday’s race at Talladega — was one of two cars taken back to the NASCAR Research & Development Center after the race. The No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota for Martin Truex Jr. was also taken to the R&D Center for further post-race inspection.

Childers, who celebrated his 600th Cup Series start at Talladega, would be eligible to return for the Nov. 6 season finale at Phoenix Raceway. The team did not immediately announce whether it would appeal the penalty. Harvick is currently 16th in points.

A behavioral penalty was also handed down in another NASCAR national series.

Competition officials indefinitely suspended Andrew Abbott, crew chief for the No. 20 Young’s Motorsports team in the Camping World Truck Series, for violating the NASCAR Member Code of Conduct (Sections 4.3.A and 4.4). Officials indicated that “completion of NASCAR-mandated anger management training is a pre-requisite to reinstatement.”