NASCAR announced Friday that Jeff Gordon has been added as the 13th member to the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
In a controversial decision, NASCAR concluded that Gordon would be added to the field after finding that Penske Racing and Front Row Motorsports acted improperly last week at Richmond, attempting to vault Joey Logano into the Chase field.
"Due to the totality of the events that were outside of Jeff Gordon's issues, we're going to add a 13th position to the field and Jeff Gordon will qualify for the Sprint Cup championship this year," NASCAR CEO Brian France said at a press conference.
The move is completely unprecedented since the implementation of the new format 10 years ago.
“It is an unprecedented and extraordinary thing, but also an unprecedented and extraordinary set of circumstances that unfolded multiple different ways on Saturday night,” France said. “We believe this is the right outcome to protect the integrity, which is our no. 1 goal, of NASCAR.”
Gordon finished behind Logano for 10th place, which carries an automatic berth to the postseason.
The events in question occurred last week at Richmond, when David Gilliland allegedly allowed Logano to pass him. In addition, Michael Waltrip racing was fined $300,000 and Martin Truex Jr. removed from the cup chase because of what the team did to alter the race results.
Additionally, both Front Row Motorsports and Penske Racing have been placed on probation until the end of the season.
"More than anything, it's just right thing to do,” France said. “There were too many things that went on Saturday night that provided a clear disadvantage."