NASCAR Clears Kyle Busch While Richard Childress Awaits his Punishment
Yesterday, the NASCAR world was shocked with a post-race fight between Kyle Busch and Richard Childress Racing owner, Richard Childress.
Before today's STP 400, Busch was cleared of any wrong-doing in the incident and Childress' access to the track and his drivers was restricted. He was also barred from pit road.
Reaction against Childress' actions has come from all corners of the NASCAR world, including Mark Aumann from NASCAR.com:
But when 65-year-old car owner Richard Childress decides to take matters into his own fists against 26-year-old Busch in the Truck Series garage, it's obvious NASCAR needs to step in. Because without saying it directly, Childress' actions show implicitly he doesn't believe the sanctioning body's policymakers are policing the sport correctly right now.
Aumann's reaction mirrors what I said yesterday concerning a punishment for Richard Childress:
If NASCAR can, and I think they will, prove that Childress struck a driver, he should be suspended from the sport for one year. Yes- one year.
This wasn’t “rubbin’ means racin’”. This was a team owner assaulting another team’s driver.
Meanwhile, NASCAR is setting the table for a large punishment against Richard Childress, “Richard Childress’ actions were not appropriate and fell far short of the standard we expect of owners in this sport,” NASCAR said in a statement. “We have met with Childress this morning and made our position very clear to him. Further, we expect he will make it clear to all in his organization to ensure this situation does not escalate any further.”
NASCAR President Mike Helton this morning before the STP 400 said,"Once we get the race concluded, which is the focus of today, we’ll have to decide what NASCAR’s reaction is to Richard Childress."
Readers to 1340TheFan.com have had a mixed reaction to yesterday's incident, with many supporting Childress. One reader, Benjamin C. said, "Good job Childress. I'm so glad that Kyle Busch finally got his punk butt beat.".
Another reader, Carol K., said, "Childress needs to be fined for what he did and be suspended in know time should you ever go into the garages and put a team member in a headlock he had this planned bush didn't do nothing wrong step up to the plate Richard and except your wrong Kyle is a number one driver good kid and deserves respect."
NASCAR is in a precarious position right now, because if the NASCAR community deems the eventual punishment handed down to Childress as too light, it will appear as favoritism toward one of the sport's largest owners.
I stand by what I said yesterday, Childress should be suspended for one year.
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