RCR appealing penalties for illegal tires

Charlotte, NC (SportsNetwork.com) – Richard Childress Racing will appeal the
penalties assessed by NASCAR to Ryan Newman’s No. 31 team for altered tires
used in last month’s Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana,

On Tuesday, NASCAR suspended crew chief Luke Lambert, tire technician James
Bender and engineer Philip Surgen for the next six races and placed them on
probation until Dec. 31. Lambert was also fined $125,000. Newman and team
owner Richard Childress were each penalized with a loss of 75 points.

In NASCAR’s 2015 Sprint Cup Series rule book, Newman’s team violated section
20.16.A (wheels and tires) – any device, modification, or procedure to the
tire or wheel, including the valve stem hardware, that is used to release
pressure, beyond normal pressure adjustments, from the tire and/or inner
shield, will not be permitted. The team also violated section 20.16.2.F
(tires) – modifications to the tires, by treatment or any other means, will
not be permitted.

The rule infractions resulted in a P5 level penalty on NASCAR’s six-level
penalty scale.

NASCAR confirmed RCR’s request for an appeal on Thursday. A date for the
appeal has yet to be announced.

NASCAR Vice President of Integrated Marketing Communications David Higdon
posted on Twitter that RCR requested deferral of penalties while the appeal is
pending. Higdon noted that NASCAR will defer the suspension and fines but not
the points. The points will be reinstated if RCR wins its appeal.

Newman’s loss of points dropped him from sixth to 26th in the point standings.

The next Sprint Cup race is April 11 at Texas Motor Speedway. The series is
off for this Easter weekend.