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Charlotte, N.C. • Clint Bowyer's NASCAR championship chances were crippled Wednesday when his car failed a follow-up inspection and he was penalized 150 points after winning last weekend's first race of the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
NASCAR also fined crew chief Shane Wilson $150,000, and suspended him for the next six Sprint Cup races. Car chief Chad Haney was also suspended six races, and team owner Richard Childress was docked 150 owner points. Bowyer was permitted to keep Sunday's victory at New Hampshire NASCAR does not typically strip wins and an official said the Richard Childress Racing team probably was punished enough. "We don't consider taking away the win," NASCAR vice president of competition Robin Pemberton said. "If you ask some, they would consider a 150-point penalty with only nine races to go in the Chase a pretty hefty penalty." With Sunday's win in the opening race of the Chase, Bowyer vaulted from 12th to second in the standings. The penalty drops him back to last place, 185 points behind leader Denny Hamlin. NASCAR said the No. 33 Chevrolet from Sunday's race had been altered and did not meet its strict specifications.