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NASCAR appeals panel overturns William Byron's 25-point penalty for spinning Denny Hamlin

William Byron's 25-point penalty has been overturned by a NASCAR appeals panel.

Hendrick Motorsports’ appeal of Byron’s penalty was successful on Thursday after it lobbied that Byron didn’t deserve a 25-point penalty for spinning Denny Hamlin under caution. While Byron’s fine for his spin was increased to $100,000, he no longer has a 25-point penalty and is in a much better position to advance to the third round of the playoffs.

Before the appeal, Byron had 3,058 points and was 11 points out of the top eight. Now Byron enters Sunday’s race at the Charlotte Roval with 3,083 points and is seventh in the points standings. He’s 14 points ahead of Austin Cindric and Chase Briscoe in ninth. The top eight drivers in the standings after Sunday’s race will advance to the third round of the playoffs.

Byron spun Hamlin under caution after he was upset with the lack of room Hamlin gave him off Turn 2 while they were racing under green flag conditions just a few laps before. NASCAR didn’t allow Hamlin to get his spot back in the top five after the spin while Byron kept his track position. NASCAR inexplicably said after the race that it didn’t see Byron spin Hamlin despite Hamlin’s car ending up in the grass and his team shouting for Byron to be penalized on the radio.

To make up for missing Byron’s spin of Hamlin in real time, NASCAR said days after the race that Byron had been penalized 25 points and fined $50,000. Had NASCAR parked Byron for the rest of his after his spin of Hamlin, he would have scored 23 points fewer than he did by being allowed to keep his spot and finish the race. Hamlin finished 10th at Texas — he likely would have finished a handful or more of spots higher had NASCAR put his car back in the right spot in the running order.

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