Rossi led 44 of the 85 laps, to score his eighth career IndyCar win and his first in more than three years.
However, following post-race technical inspection last Saturday, the #27 Andretti Autosport-Honda was found to have reached minimum weight in a manner not allowed by the IndyCar rulebook.
Rule 184.108.40.206. states that the minimum weight shall include the car in ready-to-compete condition excluding Driver, Driver Equivalency Weight, fuel and drink bottle content. Rule 220.127.116.11.1. states that minimum weight for road/street course events is 1700 pounds.
“From a sporting perspective, the car met minimum requirements,” said IndyCar president Jay Frye. “From a technical perspective, the way [Andretti Autosport] achieved the weight is not allowed.
“To meet minimum weight, the drink bottle and its contents were used as car ballast, which is not permitted and why the team is being fined and penalized.”
As a consequence, IndyCar has fined Andretti Autosport $25,000 and penalized the team 20 entrant/driver points.
That cuts Rossi’s points tally from 298 to 278 – so that his points deficit to championship leader, Team Penske-Chevrolet’s Will Power, is 153 with only four rounds remaining. It also means Rossi slips from ninth to 11th in the championship, so that Colton Herta is now Andretti Autosport-Honda’s top-ranked competitor in ninth with 285 points. Their teammates Romain Grosjean and Devlin DeFrancesco sit in 14th and 23rd respectively.
Although IndyCar stated that “members may contest the imposition of the penalties detailed in the review and appeal procedures of the NTT IndyCar Series rulebook,” team COO Rob Edwards informed Motorsport.com that Andretti Autosport accepts the penalty.
Rossi will be departing Michael Andretti’s squad at season’s end to join Arrow McLaren SP-Chevrolet as it expands to three cars. Rossi, who finished in the top three of the IndyCar championship in 2018 and ’19, will be replaced at AA by current IndyCar rookie, 2021 Indy Lights champion Kyle Kirkwood.
Herta, Grosjean and DeFrancesco will remain in the #26, #28 and #29 cars respectively.