NASCAR has issued severe penalties to Front Row Motorsports after illegal valve stem caps where found on Travis Kvapil's car last weekend at Pocono.
The team's crew chief, Steve Lane, has been fined $100,000, suspended for the next 12 races, and placed on probation until the end of the year, while his car chief and tire specialist have also been suspended for the same period.
During a rain delay at Pocono last Sunday, Front Row was found to be using valve stem caps that allowed excessive air pressure to be released as the car ran during long green-flag periods, keeping pressures more stable throughout runs.
Kvapil and team owner Doug Yates have been docked 150 driver and 150 owner points, respectively, which puts their No. 38 car outside the top 35 in the car owner standings. This means Kvapil will have to qualify on speed for Sunday's race at Michigan.
"We take the rules of this sport very seriously, and we support NASCAR in its enforcement of those rules," said team owner Bob Jenkins. "It was not our intent to put unapproved valve stem caps on our car at Pocono, a track where such a maneuver would clearly not provide any advantage. We are conducting our own internal investigation to determine how those parts got into our inventory and onto our car last weekend.
"While we recognize we have to pay for our mistake, this was an unintentional, isolated incident."
The team's race engineer Brian Burns will take over as crew chief for Kvapil this weekend at Michigan.