NASCAR has ruled that Johnny Sauter will sit out one race after he retaliated against Austin Hill under caution in last week’s M&M’s 200 at Iowa Speedway. It was the second race in a row where contact from Hill had sent Sauter into the wall derailing his race.
Sauter, 41, has a win this season which came at Dover. Overall, he is a 24-time winner in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series and he is the 2016 series champion.
This offseason he was ousted from GMS Racing and landed back at ThorSport Racing for a second stint with the organization.
A caveat to the one-race suspension is that Sauter will not lose his Playoff eligibility, so he will still have a chance to battle for a second series title in 2019.
“We look back at the history of everything we’ve done and try to react with the precedents that we’ve set and then obviously tailoring those to the situation that we have at hand,” said Scott Miller, NASCAR senior vice president of competition. “In this case, we felt like his actions certainly warranted being sat down for an event, but it felt a little too harsh to take him straight out of the championship, so we think we landed on what we feel is fair and a deterrent.”
Sauter and the No. 13 ThorSport team is entitled to an appeal of the penalty, but there has been no indication at this point that they will exercise that right.