Kevin Harvick stripped of berth in NASCAR championship race

Kevin Harvick wins at ISM Raceway

Harvick was also docked 40 points, making his work to advance even tougher if he doesn't win the only remaining race of the round at Phoenix.

Harvick's victory at Texas was his series-leading eighth in 2018.

Despite the hit, Stewart-Haas Racing does not intend to appeal. That led officials to further examine it after returning to the NASCAR Research and Development Center in North Carolina.

Harvick was also barred from using the win as an automatic entry into the final four for the November 18 championship race at Homestead.

The details were unveiled late Wednesday, 10 hours after Harvick's spot in the finale was revoked. Although Harvick has dominated the track in recent years, the upcoming race will be the first on a new layout.

Harvick's crew chief, Rodney Childers, and vehicle chief, Robert Smith, were suspended for the final two races of the season.

NASCAR provided a statement from senior vice president of competition Scott Miller. He will enter this weekend's Round of 8 finale fourth among eight playoff drivers in the standings, three points above the cutline - should there be a tie for the final transfer spot, Harvick can not use the Texas win in the tiebreaking procedure. The infraction was discovered at the NASCAR Research & Development Center in Concord, N.C. during post-race vehicle and engine teardown.


SHR has not challenged NASCAR's cheating allegation. One of his victories came in the spring, part of a three-race winning streak marred by an illegal auto at Las Vegas one week earlier.

It wasn't just SHR last weekend, either. Johnson was sent to the back of the field because NASCAR believed his vehicle failed inspection three times, but he had failed only twice.

If the only three cars inspected failed, what about the other 37 cars in Sunday's field?

"We're looking at the whole deterrence model and trying to review that over the winter and possibly put more teeth in it", Miller said, per AutoWeek. "This is an exciting time for us as we unveil the recently completed $178 million modernization project and we can't wait to showcase it to a full house during Sunday's semifinal race". "We are hoping we can change the culture to where we don't have to play this cat-and-mouse game with the teams all the time", he said.

"We have small windows and tight windows to get the inspections done, and we might spend in the neighborhood of five minutes with each of the 40 cars for the three-hour window that we have for inspection", Miller said.

Joey Logano of Team Penske - who won the previous weekend's Round of 8 race at Martinsville Speedway - is the only driver locked in to Championship Round. "We've heard the fans call out to, "Why don't you disqualify the offending car?' That's actually a topic of discussion, along with other things related to the deterrence model", Miller said".

If you're like me, you see two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races on the schedule and are immediately filled with a range of different emotions.

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