On Tuesday afternoon, NASCAR issued a massive L2 penalty to Ty Majeski and the No. 98 ThorSport Racing team for an infraction discovered this past weekend at The Milwaukee Mile.
The issue, which led to NASCAR confiscating the right rear tire from the truck in pre-race inspection, has led to significant sanctions.
Majeski has been docked 75 championship driver points and 5 Playoff Points, while the No. 98 ThorSport Racing team has also been docked 75 championship owner points and 5 Playoff Points.
Crew Chief Joe Shear has also been fined $25,000 and he will be suspended for the next four NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship points events.
According to the NASCAR penalty report, the No. 98 team was found to be in violation of Sections 14.16.A (Wheels and Tires), and 14.16.1.A&C (Wheel Assembly) of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series rule book.
Section 14.16.1.A reads, “Only NASCAR-approved wheels, listed in the NASCAR Parts Database, will be permitted.”
Section 14.16.1.C reads, “Existing approved wheels in the NASCAR Parts Database that meet or exceed SFI 35.2 can be used for the entire five year life. New Wheels must have an SFI 35.2 punch date sticker.”
Based on the rulebook sections referenced, it appears the issue with the right rear wheel on the No. 98 truck was the wheel itself and not the tire. And with the wording of the rulebook, it sounds like it was a wheel older than five years old, or possibly had an issue with the punch date sticker. However, a report from NASCAR.coma report from NASCAR.com states that the issue is related specifically to the valve stem on the wheel.
While the overall 75-point penalties seem like a big deal, they aren’t truly massive, as Majeski is already locked into the next round of the Playoffs due to his victory in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Playoffs-opener at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park. The loss of the 5 Playoff Points is the bigger deal, as that loss will carry over to each round of the Playoffs.
This penalty will drop Majeski, and the No. 98 team down to 16 Playoff Points, from 21 Playoff Points, at the start of each Round of the 2023 Playoffs. Five drivers inside the 10-driver Playoff field currently have more than 16 Playoff Points.
In addition to the penalty for Majeski, three other NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series teams faced sanctions from NASCAR post-Milwaukee.
The No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports team was found to be in violation of Sections 184.108.40.206.A&B (Triangular Filler Panels) of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series rulebook. As a result, NASCAR issued an L1 penalty. The team and driver Matt Mills have been docked 10 championship driver and owner points.
The No. 51 team is one of the 10 trucks inside the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Owners Championship Playoffs. With the penalty, The No. 51 Kyle Busch Motorsports team now sits 31 points below the cutline with one race remaining in the Playoffs Round of 10.
The No. 41 and No. 42 Niece Motorsports trucks also were found to have a lug nut improperly secured in post-race inspection, which led to a $2,500 fine for each of the team’s crew chiefs Mike Hillman, and Phil Gould.
Additionally, NASCAR issued an indefinite suspension for Aaron Volf for a Behavioral infraction. Volf was in violation of Sections 4.1; 10.1a of the NASCAR Rule Book.