NASCAR could penalize any competitor up to $50,000 for non-compliance with COVID-19 safety protocols.
Officials sent out a bulletin Wednesday afternoon noting an update in the rulebook. Under section 12.8.1, Member Conduct Guidelines, there is a bullet point for “Member actions that could result in a $10,000-$50,000 fine.”
Some of what’s found here covers verbal abuse of NASCAR officials, media members, fans, etc., and making disparaging remarks about the sport or NASCAR’s leadership. But it now also includes: “failure to comply with NASCAR’s COVID-19 Event Protocol Guidelines and/or instructions from NASCAR including screenings, social distancing, compartmentalization, and use of required personal protective equipment, etc.”
NASCAR returns to competition May 17 at Darlington Raceway with two Cup Series races and an Xfinity Series event. All three series will compete the following week at Charlotte Motor Speedway, with the Cup Series in action twice along with one race each for both the Xfinity and Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series.
The sport has been idle since March 8 at Phoenix Raceway because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Alongside confirmation of its May schedule last week, NASCAR also laid out its safety protocols for any individual who will be at the racetrack. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) has been mandated, and anyone going into the infield of a facility must wear a cloth mask. Health screenings are also required, and everyone must follow social distancing protocols.
Officials also stated last week that any individual who does not comply with the rules of wearing a mask or social distancing would be removed from the premises.
NASCAR plans on utilizing all available space in the infield of its facilities because fans will not be in attendance. Teams are also limited to 16 people on each car roster.