Kurt Busch and his No. 41 Stewart-Haas Racing team have been tagged by NASCAR with losses of driver and owner’s points, as well as a $10,000 fine for Busch’s crew chief, Daniel Knost.
The penalties come after a rules infraction was discovered during post-race inspection on the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet after Sunday’s Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway.
The infraction involves the measurement of the “Z-height.” In a bulletin, NASCAR cited Section 20-12 of the 2014 Rule Book, which discloses that at all times during races at Daytona and Talladega Superspeedway, “the Delta (or difference) of the Z-height measurement between the center of the panhard bar mounting bolt located at the left truck trailing arm and the center of the panhard bar mounting bolt, located at the right rear sub-frame mounting bracket, must not exceed three inches.”
Additionally, NASCAR said the infraction also violated Section 12-1, which involves actions detrimental to stock car racing. As a result of all of this, Busch has lost 10 driver’s points while car owner Gene Haas has lost the same amount in owner’s points.
However, the points penalty will not impact Busch’s standing in the Chase for the Sprint Cup. “The Outlaw” secured a place on the Chase Grid by winning earlier this season at Martinsville.
All regular season winners must remain in the Top 30 of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings to keep their Chase eligibility. But while Busch has fallen to 26th in the standings after this penalty, he remains 156 points ahead of 31st-place David Gilliland.
In short, his Chase outlook remains just fine.