Clint Bowyer’s team loses penalty appeal

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CONCORD, N.C. — Clint Bowyer’s appeal of a P4 penalty that dealt a serious hit to his Chase for the Sprint Cup hopes was denied Wednesday.

The team announced in a statement late Wednesday afternoon that it wouldn’t make a final appeal to Final Appeals Officer Bryan Moss.

“We are disappointed with the outcome of today’s ruling and still feel our interpretation is within the guidelines. Rather than continue the appeals process, MWR is ready to focus 100 percent of our company’s resources on winning at Dover and trying to advance to the Contender Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.”

An appeals panel consisting of former NASCAR executive Paul Brooks, former NASCAR driver Bill Lester and Langley Speedway owner and promoter Bill Mullis upheld the punishment to Bowyer’s team after hearing the case at NASCAR’s R&D Center.

The infractions were found on the No. 15 Toyota on the opening day of inspection before the Sept. 20 playoff opener at Chicagoland Speedway.

The punishment was a $75,000 fine, three-race suspension and a six months’ probation for crew chief Billy Scott. Bowyer and team owner Rob Kauffman each lost 25 points. The points deduction knocked Bowyer to last in the Chase standings.

Scott’s suspension was deferred last Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway while the team awaited the appeal hearing.

In a brief explanation of its decision, the appeals panel wrote “the Appellants violated the Rule or Rules set forth in the Penalty Notice.”