NASCAR suspends spotter Eddie D’Hondt indefinitely

NASCAR issued an indefinite suspension Wednesday to Eddie D’Hondt, spotter for the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports team, after details surfaced regarding his recent arrest in Catawba County, North Carolina.

D’Hondt was arrested May 12, according to Hickory (N.C.) Police Department records. Records in Catawba District Court show two court dates listed for D’Hondt related to two misdemeanor cases — a June 7 date for N.C. Statute 14-23.6(A), battery of an unborn child and June 30 under Statute 14-33(C)(2), assault on a female.

NASCAR officials said that D’Hondt violated Sections 12.8.1.e (Member Conduct Guidelines) and 2.11 (Required Notice) in the NASCAR Rule Book.

Section 12.8.1.e states, in part, that member actions that could result in a fine and/or indefinite suspension, or termination, include: “Being charged with or convicted of significant criminal violations (e.g. Domestic Violence, Trafficking, Assault), or having had determinations rendered by criminal or civil authorities that in NASCAR’s judgement necessitate action. NASCAR will not pre-judge guilt or innocence in the criminal or civil legal system, or the guilt or innocence of the Member, but rather review each matter in its own context and circumstances and with regards to its potential effects upon the sport.”

Section 2.11 states: “Any NASCAR Member charged with any violation of the law (misdemeanor and/or felony) shall notify NASCAR … prior to the next scheduled Event or within 72 hours of being so charged, whichever is earlier.”

Hendrick Motorsports also suspended D’Hondt and issued the following statement Wednesday morning: “We became aware of the situation this morning and have immediately and indefinitely suspended Mr. D’Hondt’s role with our company. We are taking this matter very seriously and will continue to seek additional information about the alleged incident.”

Hendrick Motorsports did not immediately announce a replacement spotter for the No. 9 team in this weekend’s events at Charlotte Motor Speedway, but team roster pages updated Thursday morning listed Trey Poole in the role. Poole, Elliott’s cousin, also served as an additional spotter for the No. 9 team at last weekend’s event at Circuit of The Americas.

D’Hondt has been a spotter for Chase Elliott since his rookie Cup Series season in 2016. He also is listed as a spotter in the Xfinity Series for the JR Motorsports No. 7 team and driver Justin Allgaier, and in the Camping World Truck Series for the Hattori Racing Enterprises No. 16 team and driver Austin Hill.

D’Hondt was previously a Cup Series spotter for Jeff Gordon and Kyle Busch.