DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- NASCAR put the hammer down on Tuesday.
n an effort to send a strong message that cheating is not tolerated in the Nextel Cup Series, the governing body suspended an unprecedented four crew chiefs for Sunday's season-opening Daytona 500.Kenny Francis and Robbie Reiser, the crew chiefs for Kasey Kahne
and Matt Kenseth
, were suspended a total of four races and fined $50,000 each for violations discovered during post-qualifying inspection on Sunday.
In addition, Kahne and Kenseth were docked 50 championship points and their car owners, Ray Evernham and Jack Roush, were docked 50 owners' points.
Rodney Childers and Josh Browne, the crew chiefs for Scott Riggs
and Elliott Sadler
-- Kahne's teammates at Evernham Motorsports -- were suspended two races and fined $25,000.
The drivers were docked 25 championship points each and Evernham was docked 25 owner points for each.
It is the first time in Cup history that four crew chiefs were sent home from one race.
All four can appeal, which would allow them to participate in the 500 because the hearing would not take place until after the race. Geoff Smith, the president of Roush Racing, is considering an appeal for Reiser. Evernham was undecided.