More than two and a half following the conclusion of Sunday’s race at Pocono Raceway, won by Denny Hamlin, NASCAR announced that Hamlin’s #11 Toyota and the #18 of his Joe Gibbs Racing team-mate Kyle Busch had failed post-race inspection.
It means Elliott is elevated from third to first, with the podium completed by Tyler Reddick and Daniel Suarez.
“There were some issues discovered that affected aero in the vehicles. The part was the front fascia. There really was no reason why there was material somewhere where it shouldn’t have been,” said NASCAR boss Brad Moran.
“They have the opportunity to appeal it and it will be all sorted out next week. I can’t get into details on what the issues were but both vehicles had the same issue and unfortunately they were not acceptable to pass inspection.”
It is the first time a Cup race winner has been disqualified since NASCAR implemented its new post-race inspection rules in 2019, but race- winner disqualifications have happened in both the Xfinity and Truck series.
Pending a change on appeal, Elliott will be credited with the win, his series-leading fourth of the 2022 season, even though he never led a lap in the race.
Denny Hamlin, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry
Photo by: Ben Earp / NKP / Motorsport Images
In Sunday race’s, Hamlin battled Ross Chastain for the lead before the fight came to blows with Chastain hitting the wall. Hamlin spent the final 13 laps of the race fending off Kyle Busch to capture what would have been his third win of the season.
The runner-up result for Busch also would have been his first top-five finish since he also took second at Gateway in early June.
Both cars were impounded by NASCAR and taken back to its research and development center in Concord. As a result of the disqualification, both Hamlin and Kyle Busch received last-place points and lose all stage points and playoff points accumulated in the Pocono race.
Pending a change to the race results through an appeal, the new finishing order behind the top three of Elliott, Reddick and Suarez saw last weekend’s winner at New Hampshire Christopher Bell promoted to fourth place, with Kyle Larson fifth and Michael McDowell sixth.
Martin Truex Jr now takes seventh place with Bubba Wallace eighth, as Erik Jones and Austin Dillon round out the top 10.