Following the aftermath of Sunday’s post-race fight between Joey Logano and Kyle Busch at the conclusion of the Kobalt 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, all eyes turned to NASCAR to see if they would levy any fines or penalties on the two drivers in the days ahead.
On Monday morning, NASCAR Vice President Steve O’Donnell made an appearance on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio to give the sanctioning body’s thoughts on the incident to this point and the possibility of penalties going forward.
“It’s certainly under review,” said O’Donnell. “We’ve always said we’ve got to take everything, make sure we look at all of the video. I would say just from our initial assessment last night and looking at what happened, I think as far as on-track, I don’t think we saw anything that was intentional by any means. We’ll continue to review that. We’ve just got to have discussions with both drivers. We talked to some folks post-race as well. I think our intention would be not to react unless we see something that we haven’t seen yet and something that comes up from those discussions. We’ll certainly bring both drivers together before we go on track in Phoenix and again have some further dialog, but it’s still under review.”
“It’s an emotional sport and I think it shows exactly how much every position means on the track. These weren’t two guys going for the win. Obviously, going for top-10’s, but it shows how important it is in the sport,” O’Donnell added.
Later on Monday, NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France echoed O’Donnell’s comments from earlier in the day.
“What I always say is, there is a very bright line that we are happy to clarify for any of the drivers, the teams, or the owners that walk into our hauler on race day or before and talk to Richard Buck, who runs the day in and day out of racing. He will be very clear about racing incidents and what we’ll accept and what might be paybacks or intentional things that go on. He’s very clear about that.”
“There’s no dispute to what that line is and when it gets crossed for emotional reasons or whatever reason, we’ll deal with it. We’re not going to get too wound up about it because it’s an emotional sport. There is a lot on the line for these drivers and teams and sponsors and everybody else. That’s just part of big time sports. You’re just going to have a little bit of that, but we have a very bright line. It’s always available if you need clarification. Richard Buck says he will take any time allowed and he will walk a driver through what the line is.”
NASCAR has been quick to react in these instances in the past, but this go around the sanctioning body seems to be taking a more lenient approach, letting the drivers sort the issues out on their own instead.