Thursday, March 24, 2016

Patrick, Busch Fined For Auto Club Violations

Danica Patrick out $20,000
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Danica Patrick and Kyle Busch were fined and placed on NASCAR probation today, for behavioral violations last weekend at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Cal.

Patrick was fined $20,000, placed on NASCAR probation for the next four Sprint Cup Series point-counting races for approaching the hot race track in the aftermath of a crash during Sunday’s Auto Club 400. Patrick climbed from her heavily damaged racer and walked onto the apron of the track to gesture at Kasey Kahne, after Kahne turned her into the outside retaining wall.
Patrick’s penalty was identical to the one assessed to Trevor Bayne for violating the same rule last season at Dover.
Busch, meanwhile, was fined $10,000 and placed on NASCAR probation for the next four Sprint Cup Series races for failing to honor mandatory post-race pit road and Media Center obligations following Saturday’s Xfinity Series race.
Kyle Busch docked $10,000
The Joe Gibbs Racing driver was angry over a non-call on the final lap of the race, when his No. 18 Toyota blew a left-front tire while leading. Race officials chose not to throw a caution flag – which would have ended the race with Busch the winner – prompting his to decline all post-race media interviews.
Busch also made a series of comments critical of NASCAR on his in-car radio immediately following the checkered flag, saying, “Debris all over the race track and they don’t throw a yellow. I’m just so pleased with you NASCAR. Thanks. Y’all are awesome. Fixing races.” He was not sanctioned by NASCAR for those comments, despite a section in NASCAR’s new 2016 Code of Conduct that calls for fines of $10,000 to $50,000 and/or probation for comments disparaging the sport and/or NASCAR's leadership.
Busch’s fine is the first assessed by NASCAR for failing to honor media commitments since 2007, when former series champion Tony Stewart was sanctioned for a similar post-race violation. 

In addition to the Patrick and Busch penalties, NASCAR assessed written warnings to six Sprint Cup Series teams. The No. 19 and No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing teams, along with the No. 3 and No. 27 teams fielded by Richard Childress Racing and the No. 21 Wood Brother Racing team received warnings for various pre-qualifying and pre-race body template and Laser Inspection Station violations. The No. 95 Circle Sport/Leavine Family Racing entry received a written warning for a rear trailing arm that did not meet specifications.


  1. These penalties are justified. I'm glad to see NASCAR didn't over react.

    1. I am glad Kyle blew off the post race interview, he had all the justification he needed to blow it off! And it also saved him a higher fine! Smart man!

  2. I am really confused, and honestly disappointed, that Kyle Busch was not fined or otherwise disciplined for his "fixing races" comment.

    Godfather, as fans we are often influenced by those we respect and follow in the sport. I am one of those fans. Someone I respect and follow wrote: "Anger and disappointment are powerful motivators. They are not, however, good excuses." The author was writing about Kyle Busch and his comment about NASCAR "fixing races."

    I believe Kyle Busch did our sport a great disservice with his comment, and while I will defend his right to speak his mind, I cannot simply dismiss what he said as "Kyle being Kyle" - that is not, nor will it ever be, the point.

    1. Like you never said anything to tick somebody off? Only difference is you can do it without getting fined!

  3. Anonymous3:57 PM

    Denny Hamlin got fined 25k for saying less a few years ago. Kyle got lucky.