NASCAR changes the point standings again

Justin Haley, Kaulig Racing, NASCAR (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Justin Haley, Kaulig Racing, NASCAR (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

At the request of NASCAR, Justin Haley’s 100-point penalty has been completely rescinded, moving him up seven positions in the point standings.

The four Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolets, plus the No. 31 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet of Justin Haley, had their hood louvers confiscated by NASCAR prior to the race at Phoenix Raceway back on Sunday, March 13.

It was discovered that the teams had illegally modified the part, and because an unapproved change to any single-source vendor-supplied part is deemed a huge violation in the Next Gen era, 100-point penalties were issued to the drivers and teams.

Hendrick Motorsports appealed their penalties and had the points portion of them wiped out, both on the driver side and the owner side. But Kaulig Racing appealed their penalties and only had the points portion of theirs reduced from 100 to 75.

Matt Kaulig’s team took the situation to Final Appeals Officer Bill Mullis, and Mullis was requested by NASCAR to completely erase the points penalties issued to the No. 31 team and Haley. He did just that. The request came in response to the Hendrick Motorsports decision, as NASCAR asked it “in the interest of treating all competitors fairly”.

As a result, the NASCAR Cup Series point standings have changed — yet again — away from the race track.

Haley is now credited with all 145 points that he has scored through the first nine races of the 2023 season. He had been sitting in 32nd place in the point standings with just 70 points, but he has now moved up to 25th, which moves him one point ahead of teammate A.J. Allmendinger.

Full updated standings can be found here.

In the owner standings, the No. 31 team has moved up from 32nd place to 26th, putting it one point ahead of Allmendinger’s No. 16 team.

The reason why the team only moved up to 26th place and not 25th is because Hendrick Motorsports’ Chase Elliott is one of the drivers Haley passed, dropping Elliott from 31st to 32nd.

But Elliott’s No. 9 team sits in 21st place in the owner standings as a result of the points that Josh Berry and Jordan Taylor scored during Elliott’s six-week absence when he was recovering from a broken left tibia, so it was not passed by the No. 31 team.

Next. All-time NASCAR Cup Series wins list. dark

Haley has two top 10 finishes this season, including a sixth place finish in the dirt race at Bristol Motor Speedway and an eighth place finish at Atlanta Motor Speedway.