Ryan Newman won't be penalized for failing a post-race inspection at Talladega on Sunday, NASCAR announced Tuesday.
Newman's car failed the initial inspection for being too low in the rear on both sides but NASCAR concluded after a further inspection that damage from the race was the cause of the violation.
"I was happy with the fact NASCAR took the time to take the car back to the tech center and analyze everything," Newman said during an appearance at the NASCAR Hall of Fame, according to The Associated Press. "In the end, they saw that the damage from being hit from behind was enough to knock the back of the car enough down to take it out of its (clearance) window."
"I didn't know if there was going to be a penalty, I didn't know what that penalty was going to be," Newman said. "I was confident it wasn't going to be more than 27 points because that would be the biggest penalty for that type of thing, ever, that I could imagine. In the end, you never know, and I was happy they did their due diligence."
Newman had 27 more points than the first driver eliminated from the Geico 500, though he had already advanced to the third round in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
Eight total drivers have moved on to the Eliminator Round, which begins this Sunday at Martinsville. The top four drivers from that race, the Nov. 2 race at Texas and Nov. 9 race at Phoenix will advance to the Championship on Nov. 16 at Homestead, where the top finisher will be named Sprint Cup champion.
Newman, 36, has finished as high as sixth in the final Sprint Cup standings over his 14-year career and finished 13th last season. He's the lone representative of Richard Childress Racing remaining in the Chase.
- Ben Estes