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Kyle Larson drops out of Cup points lead after penalty

SPARTA, KENTUCKY - JULY 07: Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet, waits for the start of practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts at Kentucky Speedway on July 7, 2017 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)
Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images
Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 42 Chevrolet, will arrive New Hampshire this weekend trailing Martin Truex Jr. by 34 points in the driver standings after dropping out of the lead due to a 35-point penalty because his car failed a post-race inspection in Sparta, Ky.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — NASCAR driver Kyle Larson has lost his Cup series lead and his crew chief, Chad Johnston, has been suspended after failing a post-race inspection at Kentucky.

Larson’s team was penalized 35 points Wednesday, erasing what had been a one-point advantage over Martin Truex Jr. in the driver standings. Larson, who now trails Truex by 34 points (709-675), is still 66 points ahead of third-place Kyle Busch.

Larson’s No. 42 Chevrolet was penalized for a rear brake cooling assembly that did not meet standards. Johnston was suspended three races and fined $75,000. He will miss Cup races starting this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.


Chip Ganassi Racing says it will not appeal NASCAR’s penalty.

NASCAR has also fined Busch’s crew, chief Adam Stevens, $10,000 after an unsecured lug nut was found in post-race inspection.