Download Updated Rulebook: 2019 NTT IndyCar Series Rulebook (Full)
IMPORTANT: The rulebook content below was released to all parties on March 1, 2019, and should be considered UNOFFICIAL. No in-season amendments or bulletins are reflected in the below copy. Please refer to the above PDF link for the updated rulebook.
Except as expressly provided in these Rules, the exercise of judgment by Officials during an Event issuing a penalty or otherwise shall not be appealed and the decision of Officials is final and binding. By submitting a membership application and in consideration of receiving the numerous benefits available, each Member agrees that the final and binding decisions of Officials are non-litigable. Each Member agrees to abide by the decision of the appeal panel. No court action of any kind may be taken by any Member. Further, there is no right of review or appeal of any INDYCAR decision or penalty to FIA and/or ACCUS-FIA and/or any other third party including the FIA International Court of Appeals and ACCUS-FIA National Court of Appeals, even if an Event is listed by ACCUS-FIA and/or another ASN on the FIA international calendar. By reason of membership in INDYCAR and/or participation in an Event, any Member waives any rights such Member may otherwise have to be a party or to take any action in court seeking legal or equitable relief against any decision or action of any kind by INDYCAR, the Officials, anyone acting on behalf of INDYCAR, the review facilitator and/or the appeal panel. Each Member acknowledges that participation in an Event by other Members is in part in reliance on this waiver. If a Member initiates or participates in litigation in violation of these Rules, all membership privileges may thereupon be suspended and is subject to the provisions of Rule 1.4 of these Rules.
11.2 When is an Appeal Allowed
Only penalties satisfying the following requirements may be appealed: penalties subject to review under Rule 10 of these Rules, penalties that have completed the review process under Rule 10 of these Rules, and penalties that are the subject of a request for appeal in compliance with this Rule 11. An applicant or Member may not request appeal of the existence or wording of a Rule and/or the non-imposition of a penalty.
11.3 Who May Request an Appeal
Only the party/parties satisfying the following requirements may appeal a penalty: party/parties that originally submitted the penalty for review under Rule 10 of these Rules, and parties that have participated in the review process under Rule 10 of these Rules, including entering into the confidentiality agreement.
11.4. Submission of Appeals
11.4.1. If an appeal is permitted under these Rules, an appeal shall be in writing and include the following:
- Clearly state the errors claimed.
- Each claimed error must be stated in specific rather than general terms and must be accompanied by a written statement of the facts and grounds upon which it is based.
- Designate a single point of contact for the party submitting the appeal and contain the name, address, e-mail and telephone number for this person who will be the only point of contact concerning the appeal with respect to such party.
11.4.2. The request for appeal must be delivered to and received by INDYCAR within three (3) Business Days after the conclusion of the review meeting set forth in Rule 10 of these Rules (not including the day of the review meeting) and sent via email to:
11.4.3. A request for appeal shall be considered received only upon INDYCAR’s actual receipt of the request and INDYCAR’s email response to the sender confirming INDYCAR’s receipt. INDYCAR is not responsible for errors in electronic transmission and/or receipt of the request.
11.4.4. If INDYCAR decides a request for appeal does not adhere to these Rules, it may be dismissed and treated as if it were not submitted. If the three (3) Business Days have passed, a new request for appeal may not be submitted. If the three (3) Business Days have not passed, a new request for appeal may be submitted.
11.4.5. If INDYCAR decides a request for appeal adheres to these Rules, INDYCAR specifies an individual to serve as appeal administrator to assist the appeal party, INDYCAR and the appeal panel chair with any and all administrative aspects of the review. The appeal administrator is not involved in any substantive manner in the appeal. During the appeal process, the appeal administrator is the only point of contact for the appeal party, INDYCAR, and the appeal panel chair regarding the administrative aspects of the appeal process.
11.5. Appeal Process and Hearing
11.5.1. An appeal is intended to be formal, as compared to the informal review process.
11.5.2. Except as otherwise provided in Rule 188.8.131.52, the appeal and all discussions, information and documents concerning the appeal and at the appeal hearing are confidential. The party/parties submitting the appeal and all present at the appeal hearing or in possession or control of such documents and information shall enter into a confidentiality agreement supplied by INDYCAR prior to the commencement of the appeal hearing. Each member of the appeal panel shall enter into the confidentiality agreement prior to receiving any information and documents concerning the appeal. Any party that does not timely enter into the confidentiality agreement provided by INDYCAR will not be permitted to participate in the appeal and such party will no longer have a right to an appeal of the penalty.
11.5.3. There shall be no transcript or recording of the appeal hearing.
11.5.4. The appeal must contain reference to the specific action by Officials from which an appeal is taken, the date of the occurrence, the reasons for the appeal, and the relief requested. The appeal must be accompanied by copies of all written documents pertaining to the appeal, such as the written review request submitted under Rule 10 of these Rules, responses, rulings and declarations. The appeal must clearly and explicitly state the basis of the appeal.
11.5.5. The appeal will be conducted by an appeal panel. To participate in a particular appeal, the panel member must be available and without potential or actual conflicts of interest. The appeal will be heard by an appeal panel comprised of three (3) of the panel members listed below. In the event there are multiple parties submitting an appeal for the same penalty, the party submitting the first appeal actually received by INDYCAR shall choose the appeal panel for and on behalf of such party and all other parties requesting an appeal.
Bill Bock, Robin Pemberton,
Lyn St. James
11.5.6. Upon receipt of a request for appeal, the appeal administrator will notify each individual in the pool of the receipt of a request for appeal to confirm availability and identify any potential or actual conflicts of interest.
11.5.7. Within three (3) Business Days after receiving a written appeal, the appeal administrator shall conduct a conference call with INDYCAR and the person designated as the only point of contact for the party filing an appeal, to choose the three (3) members of the appeal panel. During this conference call, INDYCAR and appeal party shall be ready and have full authority to choose the three (3) member appeal panel. The appeal administrator shall inform INDYCAR and the appeal party of any individuals in the pool with confirmed unavailability and/or with potential or actual conflicts of interest, and those individuals may not be selected for the appeal panel. The appeal party shall choose the first appeal panel member. Next, INDYCAR shall choose an appeal panel member. The third member of the appeal panel will be chosen by agreement of INDYCAR and the appeal party. If INDYCAR and the appeal party cannot agree on the third appeal panel member, three (3) potential appeal panel members will be randomly chosen by INDYCAR from the remaining potential appeal panel members in Rule 11.5.5 above. The appeal party shall strike one potential appeal panel member from this list, then INDYCAR shall strike one potential appeal panel member from this list, and the individual remaining is the third member of the appeal panel and the chair of the appeal panel. The chair of the appeal panel is responsible for coordinating with the other appeal panel members and being the only contact among the appeal panel and INDYCAR and the appeal party/parties regarding all aspects of the appeal and appeal hearing.
11.5.8. Once the three (3) member appeal panel is chosen, the appeal panel shall govern the appeal process and conduct an appeal in-person hearing. Any direction, decision, determination or act by the appeal panel shall be made by a majority vote of the three (3) members of the appeal panel.
11.5.9. During and through the conclusion of the appeal process, the appeal panel members shall not be employed by or on behalf of or otherwise affiliated in any other capacity with any of the parties to the review and/or appeal; however, the appeal panel members may serve in his/her capacity as a review facilitator and/or appeal panel member for other requests for review and/or appeal.
11.5.10. During the appeal process, the appeal panel must strive to uphold the integrity of INDYCAR, the NTT IndyCar Series, and the Events. At all times, the appeal panel must be professional, courteous, and independent.
184.108.40.206. The appeal panel has a duty to disclose any potential or actual conflicts of interest that may exist or arise with regards to any of the appeal participants.
220.127.116.11. Any appearance of impropriety will not be allowed and may result in removal of an appeal panel member from an appeal and/or from the list of possible appeal panel members in these Rules.
18.104.22.168. The appeal panel members should refer any media inquiries to the appeal administrator.
22.214.171.124. Each member of the appeal panel must thoroughly review the submissions and familiarize himself/herself with the issues during the appeal; however, the appeal panel must not perform any independent review or research and/or communicate in any manner about the subject matter of the appeal by or amount any of the appeal participants outside of the formal appeal structure. The appeal panel members are expected to vigorously apply the Rules to the facts in order to reach a thorough, thoughtful, and fair decision.
11.5.11. Once the appeal panel has been selected, the appeal administrator provides the appeal panel chair with the Rules and all applicable bulletins to date. Once each appeal panel member has entered into the confidentiality agreement, the appeal administrator provides the appeal panel chair with non-public information and documents concerning the appeal.
11.5.12. The appeal panel must decide if the request for appeal adheres to these Rules.
11.5.13. If the appeal panel decides the request for appeal did not adhere to these Rules, the request for appeal may be dismissed, disregarded as having never been submitted, and the appeal panel may disallow any new submission of the same issue. The appeal panel must still issue a confidential written decision to the appeal party and INDYCAR.
11.5.14. If the appeal panel decides the request for appeal adhered to these Rules, the appeal hearing shall be concluded within seven (7) Business Days of the submission of the appeal. If the parties and the appeal panel are unable to decide upon an acceptable date during the seven (7) Business Day period, the appeal panel shall decide upon a date within three (3) Business Days after such seven (7) Business Day period (e.g. appeal panel could choose the 8th – 10th Business Day) and such decision is final and binding on the parties.
11.5.15. The appeal panel shall establish the timing and process for each party to submit a written statement concerning the appeal and any supporting documentation; the exact time of the appeal hearing; the duration of the appeal hearing; and who may attend the appeal hearing. INDYCAR and the party/parties requesting the appeal shall be permitted to appear at the appeal hearing through or accompanied by legal counsel. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the timing and process shall include the following components at a minimum:
126.96.36.199. Within two (2) Business Days prior to the appeal hearing, INDYCAR and each party seeking an appeal shall provide the appeal panel with:
- The names, titles and contact information of all attendees to attend the appeal hearing and the purpose for which each present at will be the appeal hearing, and
- a summary of its position not to exceed ten (10), double spaced pages in length, not including supporting documentation.
The appeal panel does not exchange position summaries with the other parties and/or INDYCAR unless the parties and INDYCAR mutually agree.
188.8.131.52. The appeal panel shall conduct the hearing in the following manner. Prior to opening statements or the submission of proof by the party requesting the appeal, the appeal panel may request that INDYCAR submit an explanation of the basis of its decision.
184.108.40.206.1. Opening Statements – The parties to the proceedings will be permitted to make opening statements, with the party requesting the appeal making the first opening statement. Each party shall state the issue(s) before the appeal panel and a brief summary of the position of the party with respect to such issue(s).
220.127.116.11.2. Order of Proof – The evidence shall be received by the appeal panel in the following order:
18.104.22.168.2.1. The party requesting the appeal shall first submit and present evidence in support of the appeal. Upon the completion of direct examination, each witness shall be subject to cross-examination by the other parties and by the appeal panel.
22.214.171.124.2.2. INDYCAR and the other parties shall then be permitted to present evidence, and any witnesses presented shall be subject to cross-examination by the party requesting the appeal, by other parties, and by the appeal panel.
126.96.36.199.2.3. Closing Arguments – Upon completion of the evidentiary portion of the hearing, all parties, beginning with the party requesting the appeal, may make closing arguments.
11.5.16. The appeal hearing will be conducted at the INDYCAR offices located in Indianapolis, Indiana. If the parties and the appeal panel mutually agree, they may decide upon a location other than the INDYCAR offices in Indianapolis, Indiana and/or another location than Indianapolis, Indiana.
11.5.17. The appeal hearing is not open to the public and admittance to the hearing is by invitation of the appeal panel and can be revoked. The appeal panel shall identify the parties and other necessary participants in the proceedings. Each party is permitted a maximum of three (3) attendees at the appeal hearing, including legal counsel, but not including any Members or other witnesses appearing at the request of the appeal panel. INDYCAR and each party requesting the appeal shall have at least one (1) attendee with full authority at the appeal hearing. The appeal panel may summon any Member to testify at the hearing. If a Member is called as a witness and fails to appear, INDYCAR may revoke the Member’s License and/or membership and/or otherwise penalize the Member.
11.5.18. The hearing shall be confined to the errors claimed in the appeal and evidence relevant to those errors.
11.5.19. The appeal panel shall not be limited to the technical common law rules of evidence required in judicial proceedings but shall be satisfied the evidence submitted is of a type on which the appeal panel can rely. The appeal panel may exclude irrelevant, immaterial, or unduly repetitious evidence.
11.5.20. All parties to the proceedings shall be permitted to present and cross-examine witnesses and to submit evidence, both oral and documentary. The burden of proof shall remain at all times on the party/parties submitting the appeal.
11.5.21. The decision of the appeal panel is final and binding on INDYCAR and each party submitting an appeal. An appeal panel decision may not include the re-drafting of a Rule and/or a Penalty Guideline. The appeal panel shall issue a confidential written determination of the appeal within three (3) Business Days of the conclusion of the appeal hearing and this written determination is subject to the confidentiality agreement set forth in this Rule 11. After the conclusion of the appeal hearing, the appeal panel shall destroy any and all notes, records, and/or other electronic and hard copy documents received regarding the appeal.
11.5.22. The appeal panel shall allocate the reasonable costs and expenses of the appeal panel amongst INDYCAR and each party submitting an appeal of the penalty. INDYCAR and each party submitting an appeal shall bear their own attorneys’ fees, costs and expenses. Within ten (10) Business Days from the appeal panel’s decision, INDYCAR and each party submitting an appeal shall pay the appeal panel their respective share of the remaining appeal panel costs and expenses.
11.6. Compliance with Procedures
11.6.1. Any appeal that fails to comply with any of the foregoing requirements will be dismissed with prejudice and disregarded as having never been submitted. Any error not specifically raised in the appeal shall be deemed to have been waived.