NASCAR fines Ricky Stenhouse Jr. $75K for punching Kyle Busch

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was fined $75,000 by NASCAR on Wednesday for punching fellow driver Kyle Busch after the NASCAR All-Star Race at North Wilkesboro Speedway.

Richard Stenhouse, the driver’s father, was suspended indefinitely for violations of the NASCAR Member Code of Conduct. NASCAR also issued an eight-race suspension to JTG Daugherty Racing team mechanic Clint Myrick and a four-race ban for tuner Keith Matthews for their roles, however Busch was not penalized for his actions.

“I think it’s fair to say that when you have crew members and family members that put their hands on our drivers, we’re going to react,” NASCAR senior vice president of competition Elton Sawyer said Wednesday morning on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “There’s not a lot of detail I’m going to get into due to the fact that these are appealable penalties, and I want to make sure that we’re fair to that process.

“With that being said, and we’ve been consistent about this, when crew members and family members get involved, we are going to react. That’s exactly what we did.”

Stenhouse and Busch got involved Sunday on the first lap and then the latter appeared to attempt to deliberately wreck the former on the second. Stenhouse took issue by parking his damaged Chevrolet in Busch’s pit stall and waiting for the driver to finish his race.

After a brief discussion, Stenhouse landed a right hook on the side of Busch’s face before other team members got involved. Stenhouse’s father also went after Busch.

“When you wait 198 laps and you make those decisions that were made, again, we’re going to react to that,” Sawyer said. “…Once we get to the point where it gets physical, we want the two drivers to be able to have time to express their differences. Once it escalates to a physical altercation, we are going to react.

“Granted there was no tunnel, granted there was no crossover bridge (to allow Stenhouse Jr. to leave the track), better decisions could have been made throughout that period of time between the incident on the race track and the incident in the garage post-race.”

–Field Level Media