Owner/driver Robby Gordon has been penalised 50 championship owner points and 50 championship driver points for a rear axle housing infraction discovered by NASCAR inspectors after Monday's rain-shortened Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway, in which Gordon finished third.

Kirk Almquist, crew chief of the #7 Toyota driven by Gordon, was fined $50,000 for the violation. Specifically, the rear axle housing exceeded the allowable toe of plus or minus one degree. In layman's terms, the axle was canted too far to the right, which can facilitate corner entry and improve a car's ability to turn through the corner.

Believing there might be an issue with the housing, based on post-race inspection at LMS, NASCAR impounded the part and took it to the research-and-development center in Concord, N.C., for further examination. The penalties were announced Wednesday afternoon.

Gordon earned $208,985 for his third-place finish, which he earned by staying on the track under caution after rain hit the speedway. When the rain persisted, NASCAR called the race after 227 laps.

NASCAR also announced on Wednesday that Andrew Crnkovic, a crew member for the #07 team in the Camping World Truck Series, has been suspended indefinitely for violation of NASCAR's substance abuse policy, based on findings from a drug test administered during Sprint All-Star Race weekend (May 15-16).

Chad McCumbee, who drives the #07 Green Light Racing Chevrolet, finished 15th in the May 15 trucks race at LMS.

By Reid Spencer/Sporting News


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