The Verizon IndyCar Series’ manufacturer points system was altered this offseason to begin with, and now, at Round 3 of the championship, we have our first round of new era engine points penalties.
Chevrolet has been docked 50 total points and Honda 30, for two rules infractions.
The full release from INDYCAR is below. As this is the first such round of engine penalties, we’re glad there’s an explanation and reasoning for INDYCAR dropping the hammer.
A total of 50 points have been deducted from Chevrolet’s manufacturer championship total and Honda’s total has been reduced by 30 points for violation of engine sporting regulations.
The Nos. 11, 12, 17 and 20 cars with Chevrolet power and the No. 98 Honda-powered car were found to have violated rule 10.6.4 (non-minor engine repair). In accordance with the rule, 10 points will be deducted for an engine undergoing a non-minor repair that requires a component change, subject to INDYCAR approval. The engine will no longer be eligible for points from Rule 10.6.4.2.
Additionally, both manufacturers were found to have violated Rule 16.5.1 (engine change under mileage). Chevrolet switched out the engine in the No. 83 car and Honda before it met the 2,500-mile threshold, while the Honda engine in the Nos. 7 and 77 cars were changed out.
The members may contest the imposition of the penalties pursuant to the procedures and timelines detailed in the review and appeal procedures of the Verizon IndyCar Series rulebook.
Chevrolet leads the Engine Manufacturers’ Championship 197-112 heading into the April 27 Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama.
The last two years since engine competition was reintroduced, engine-related penalties have been applied as 10-spot grid penalties for unapproved engine changes or an elimination of manufacturer points eligibility if an entrant was using its sixth engine or more over the course of the season.
Long Beach two years ago saw the entire Chevrolet contingent opt to change engines ahead of the race, all unapproved, so all took 10-position grid penalties as a result.
These penalties assessed don’t overcomplicate the process; they merely take away points, which the new points system allows for room to happen.