NASCAR issues penalties to all three Joe Gibbs Racing Cup teams

BRISTOL, TN - APRIL 24: Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Freight Toyota, races Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M's Toyota, during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on April 24, 2017 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)

NASCAR issued L-1 penalties to all three of the Joe Gibbs Racing teams in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Tuesday for infractions discovered during pre-race inspection at Michigan this past Sunday.  The infractions were due to splitters that did not meet rules specifications.

The No. 18 team of Kyle Busch, No. 11 team of Denny Hamlin and the No. 20 team of Erik Jones were all sent to the rear of the field prior to the Michigan race when the violations were found.

Busch finished fourth Sunday, Hamlin 12th and Jones 15th.

The respective crew chiefs for each team Mike Wheeler (No. 11 team), Adam Stevens (No. 18 team) and Chris Gayle (No. 20 team) all were fined $25,000.  The car chiefs — Brandon Griffeth (No. 11 car chief), Nate Bellows (No. 18 car chief) and Jason Overstreet (No. 20 car chief) — all were suspended from the next Monster Energy Series points event.

The Cup Series is off this weekend, so the penalties will be served at Sonoma Raceway next weekend

There was no immediate word on whether Joe Gibbs Racing officials planned to appeal.

Greg Engle
About Greg Engle 7421 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.