Ryan Newman’s job just got a whole lot more difficult.
NASCAR docked the Richard Childress Racing driver 15 championship points today, after his Caterpillar Chevrolet failed the Laser Inspection Station following Sunday night’s Bojangle’s Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.
After the penalty, Newman now trails Jamie McMurray by 22 points in the battle for the final spot in the 2016 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. While he could still make the Chase on points, he will almost certainly need to win Saturday night’s race at Richmond International Raceway to qualify.
In addition to Newman’s penalty, car owner Richard Childress was docked 15 championship car owner points, with crew chief Luke Lambert fined $25,000. RCR could appeal the penalty, and NASCAR has provisions for expediting such an appeal in order to have a final verdict before Saturday night’s decisive race at Richmond.
In addition to Newman’s penalty, Kyle Larson’s team was also penalized for a Laser Inspection Station violation following Sunday night’s race. NASCAR docked Larson 15 driver points and docked Chip Ganassi 15 owner points, with Chad Johnston fined $22,500 for a P2 penalty.