At Thursday's hearing, the National Motorsports Appeals Panel revised the penalty assessed by NASCAR to William Byron. An appeals panel took away the 25-point penalty handed to Byron and his Hendrick Motorsports team owner points table. His crucial points are now restored, but the appeals panel elected to double his fine from $50,000 to $100,000 for spinning Denny Hamlin.
The #24 Chevrolet driver was penalized for his intentional contact with Hamlin under caution two weeks ago at Texas Motor Speedway, which sent the latter's #11 car spinning into the infield and out of the top five.
Following the incident, William Byron faced a heavy penalty as the driver was docked 25 driver points and 25 owner points along with a fine of $50,000 for violating Section 4.3 A & 4.4.C of the NASCAR Rule Book, which pertains to the NASCAR Member Code of Conduct. The penalty was a heavy blow for Byron as losing 25 points in the second round of the playoffs is a huge deal. Hendrick Motorsports immediately appealed against the NASCAR penalty.
The removal of the 25-point penalty was definitely a win for Byron and his team. The outlook for the playoffs changes as he goes from below the elimination line to safe on the points table ahead of Sunday’s Round of 12 final race at Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course. He returns from 10th in the points table and 11 points below the cutoff line to seventh and 14 points above it.
Hendrick Motorsports’ penalty was heard by a three-member panel that included television executive Hunter Nickell and short-track promoters Dale Pinillis and Kevin Whitaker.
Playoff standings after William Byron won NASCAR appeal
With the restoration of William Byron’s points, Daniel Suarez fell to eighth place in the standings, with 12 points above the cutoff line. Meanwhile, Chase Briscoe, Austin Cindric, Christopher Bell, and Alex Bowman are the four drivers below the cutoff line and in danger of elimination following Sunday’s Charlotte race. Only the top eight drivers will advance into the next round of the 2022 playoffs.
Here's what NASCAR's playoff standings look like after Byron’s wins appeal:
- Chase Elliott - 3103
- Ryan Blaney - 3101
- Ross Chastain - 3097
- Denny Hamlin - 3090
- Joey Logano - 3087
- Kyle Larson - 3087
- William Byron - 3083
- Daniel Suarez - 3081
- Chase Briscoe - 3069
- Austin Cindric - 3069
- Christopher Bell - 3036
- Alex Bowman - 3015
Catch NASCAR drivers and teams at Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course on Sunday.