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IndyCar penalizes Honda, teams, drivers for unapproved engine changes prior to Indy 500

May 28, 2014, 3:32 PM EDT

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Officials of the Verizon IndyCar Series on Wednesday afternoon announced a number of penalties (but no monetary fines) to Honda as a manufacturer, as well as several Honda drivers and team owners for unapproved engine changes prior to the Indianapolis 500.

Here’s the official statement from IndyCar:

INDYCAR announced today that Honda has been penalized a total of 50 Engine Manufacturer Championship points per Verizon IndyCar Series rules for violation of Rule 16.5.1 (engine change under mileage).

Honda engines were changed out in the Nos. 14 (Takuma Sato/A.J. Foyt Racing), 15 (Graham Rahal/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing), 19 (Justin Wilson/Dale Coyne Racing), 27 (James Hinchcliffe/Andretti Autosport) and 34 Carlos Munoz/Andretti Autosport) entries. Each occurrence is a 10-point penalty incurred by the manufacturer.

Also, engine changes in the No. 5 (Jacques Villeneuve/Schmidt Peterson Motorsports), No. 16 (Oriol Servia/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing), No. 41 (Martin Plowman/A.J. Foyt Racing) and No. 68 (Alex Tagliani/Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing) cars violated Rule 16.5.1 (entrant initiated engine change under mileage).

Each entrant and driver has been assessed a 10-point penalty, according to Verizon IndyCar Series rules.

Members may contest the imposition of the penalty pursuant to the procedures and timelines detailed in the review and appeal procedures of the Verizon IndyCar Series rulebook.

Honda powered 19 cars in Sunday’s Indianapolis 500, including race-winner Ryan Hunter-Reay and others such as Indy 500 Rookie of the Year Kurt Busch, Josef Newgarden, Marco Andretti, Pippa Mann, Carlos Huerta, Simon Pagenaud and Mikhail Aleshin.

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  1. techmeister1 - May 28, 2014 at 3:36 PM

    This would suggest that the 10 point penalty is insufficient to prevent unnecesary engine changes that might provide a small performance advantage.

    • indycarseries500 - May 28, 2014 at 5:00 PM

      Winning the Indianapolis 500 and/or the Driver’s championship is more important to the manufacturers than winning the manufacturer’s championship. Do you remember Chevy won the Manufacturer’s Championship or do you remember Scott Dixon winning the IndyCar Series Championship powered by Honda?

  2. grgstrickland - May 28, 2014 at 5:02 PM

    a jap will do anything to win.

  3. testover6370 - May 28, 2014 at 6:05 PM

    Not exactly breaking news, Racer had this when I checked early this morning, and penalties for early engine changes are pretty common after Indycar races.

  4. sbs2ncsc4 - May 28, 2014 at 8:33 PM

    Ah, silly me. And I thought ‘manipulative and creative interpretation’ of the rules was
    limited strictly to NASCAR.

    Well let’s hope IndyCar isn’t headed in the same rules direction as NASCAR … that
    certainly isn”t racing these days. Not with all of those ‘scheduled’ cautions.

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