Hit by NASCAR penalty, Logano says team doesn't cheat

Hit by NASCAR penalty, Logano says team doesn't cheat

NASCAR has levied heavy penalties against Team Penske's No. 22 team after Joey Logano's winning vehicle from Richmond International Raceway was found with a rear suspension violation at the R&D Center.

However, his vehicle failed post-race technical checks at NASCAR's R&D facility, therefore the win has been declared "encumbered".

Thursday, NASCAR ruled Logano's win in the Toyota Owners 400 has been encumbered, meaning it will not count toward the playoffs. And gone are the five bonus points he would have received for a legal win. The differences are that NASCAR still declares the winning driver the victor (the sanctioning body has always been loathe to name anyone a race victor who didn't take the checkered flag) and that vacated victories in other sports usually take place down the road, not within the season now being contested. The penalty also comes with a $50,000 fine and two-race suspension for crew chief Todd Gordon, and the loss of 25 driver points and 25 owner points, NASCAR announced. Those playoff points are added to a driver's total when points are reset for each of the first three rounds of the playoffs.

Video from Sunday's race in Richmond shows Keselowski swerving immediately after the race, although Logano doesn't.

"Like I said, I drive the auto", Logano said.

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Joey Logano says Team Penske is the most professional team in auto racing and simply pushes the limits as far as it can in pursuit of speed. NASCAR said on Thursday the truck arm in the back of the vehicle was installed improperly. Crew chief Mike Wheeler was fined $10,000 for the infraction.

"The fact of the matter is we're winning right now, and when your auto wins, it gets put through tech a lot". We don't work that way at Team Penske, try to stay on the up and up and push the things to where we can. The rule is black and white that it must be flush and we apparently had a little bit of a gap.

"We are disappointed by the notice, however, we do not plan to appeal the penalty".

Logano's race engineer Miles Stanley and veteran crew chief Greg Erwin will pick up the slack in the absence of Gordon.

Keselowski finished second to his teammate at Richmond and his vehicle was also taken for a further inspection.

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