NASCAR announced Wednesday that Austin Dillon's No. 3 Richard Childress Racing team has been issued an L1-level penalty for an illegal underwing assembly discovered on their car following last Sunday's race at Martinsville Speedway. Dillon's car was brought back to NASCAR's Research & Development Center following the race, where it was discovered to be in violation of Sections 14.6.1 A&B (Underwing Assembly Mounting & Underwing Stay Assembly Hardware).
Dillon and the No. 3 team have been docked 60 driver and owner points as well as five playoff points, and crew chief Keith Rodden has been fined $75,000 and suspended for the next two Cup Series races at Talladega and Dover. The penalty drops Dillon from 21st in the Cup Series points standings all the way back to 28th, 84 points back of the current playoff cutoff line of 16th in the standings.
Late Wednesday afternoon, the team said in a statement that it plans to appeal the penalty.
The penalty to Dillon's team continues what has been a rash of steep penalties for technical infractions that have been handed out by NASCAR throughout the spring, the most high profile of which were penalties to all four Hendrick Motorsports teams as well as Kaulig Racing's No. 31 team for illegal hood louvers confiscated from their cars at Phoenix Raceway. While Hendrick and Kaulig, Hendrick Motorsports for illegal modifications to the greenhouse area of William Byron and Alex Bowman's cars at Richmond.
Elsewhere on NASCAR's penalty report, Live Fast Motorsports crewmembers Chris Jackson and David Smith were suspended for two races after an improperly-installed wheel fell off of their car at Martinsville. The right rear wheel of Anthony Alfredo's car fell off and came to rest in Turn 4 during last Sunday's race, bringing out a caution during a cycle of green flag pitstops.