NASCAR has docked Erik Jones and his Legacy Motor Club team 60 points in the standings as a result of the discovery of a modified greenhouse.
NASCAR has not been shy about dishing out penalties for violations they have discovered in year number two of the Gen 7 car, and that trend continued after Sunday’s Cup Series race at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway.
The No. 43 Legacy Motor Club Chevrolet, which was driven by Erik Jones to an 18th place finish in Sunday’s Enjoy Illinois 300 presented by TicketSmarter, was found to have a modified greenhouse in post-race inspection. According to NASCAR.com, the greenhouse is the top portion of the car, including everything from the top of the doors upward.
The No. 43 team was said to have violated Section 14.1. Overall Assembled Vehicle Rules and Section 14.1.2.B Engineering Change Log in the NASCAR Rule Book. The same issue was discovered on two Hendrick Motorsports cars after the race at Richmond Raceway in early April.
As a result, NASCAR issued Erik Jones and the No. 43 team an L1-level penalty.
Jones was docked 60 points in the driver standings while the No. 43 team was docked 60 points in the owner standings. Jones will also lose five playoff points if he qualifies for the playoffs, as will the No. 43 team if they qualify for the owner playoffs. Additionally, NASCAR suspended Dave Elenz, the crew chief of the No. 43 team, for the next two races. They also fined him $75,000.
The same penalties were issued to the two Hendrick Motorsports teams that were found to have committed a greenhouse violation two months ago.
Jones had been tied for 26th place in the point standings, and the No. 43 team had been tied for 26th in the owner standings. Jones has now dropped to the 30th, as has the No. 43 team.
Jones had been 68 points below the playoff cut line, but he is now 128 points behind. The No. 43 team had been 101 points below the owner playoff cut line, but they are now 161 points behind.
The owner playoff cut line is higher than the driver playoff cut line since a number of teams currently in the playoff picture have had multiple drivers this season. As a result, the teams have scored more points than their primary drivers.
The penalty is yet another blow to a Legacy Motor Club team that have struggled throughout the 2023 season. Their full-time drivers, Jones and Noah Gragson, now sit in 30th and 32nd place in the driver standings, and their two chartered entries sit 30th and 34th in the owner standings.