Kevin Harvick blames social media for NASCAR penalties following Las Vegas

Kevin Harvick dominated the last two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series events claiming victories at Atlanta and Las Vegas in consecutive weeks.

Earlier this week, NASCAR issued penalties to Harvick’s No. 4 team for a failed brace and a steel part where rules call for aluminum.

The penalties resulted in a loss of seven playoff points, 20 regular-season points, and a fine of $50,000.

Harvick believes the penalties from NASCAR were fueled by reaction on social media and spent Friday’s media session at ISM Raceway detailing his thoughts on the situation.

“The officials in the garage do a great job,” Harvick told reporters. “It just feels like it is a micromanaged situation from above what these guys do in the garage, to appease people sitting on social media and trying to officiate a sporting event instead of letting these guys in the garage do what they do and do a great job with it week in and week out. That is the frustrating part.”

Harvick also detailed why his car was out of tolerance.

“The roof caved in, pulled the back and top of the window down, and that is really the root of the social-media outrage that came after the race,” he said. “The car passed all the optical scanning station inspections and everything after the race. The car was built to tolerance.

“The scary part for me is the fact that we went far enough to find something on the car at the NASCAR R&D center. They could find something wrong with every car if they took it apart for a whole day at the R&D center. “

Harvick’s comments have upset NASCAR’s officiating body who plans to release a statement later on Friday.

“You look at golf and the fan officiating and the chaos that it caused,” Harvick said. “I think you see some of the repercussions of finding a penalty that was big enough to make the car sufficient to have a fine big enough to appease everybody. That didn’t work in golf. It won’t work here. I think as you look at it, you have to take it and move on and you just deal with it and go forward.”