By AMANDA VINCENT
NASCAR released its weekly penalty report on Thursday, listing penalties handed out as a result of actions during the recent Xfinity Series/Sprint Cup Series doubleheader race weekend at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., that included the March 19 Xfinity race and March 20 Sprint Cup Series race.
Kyle Busch was issued behavioral penalties that included a $10,000 fine and four-race probation as a result of his behavior at the conclusion of the Xfinity Series race in Fontana.
He disobeyed NASCAR’s directive to report to the media center for the post-race press conference.
After a tire blowout while leading on the final lap resulted in a second-place finish, Busch’s rant over the radio to his team included an accusation that NASCAR “fixed” the finish of the race by not throwing a caution for the debris from his tire. But according to NASCAR, he was not penalized for his comments.
Danica Patrick also was penalized for a behavioral issue at Auto Club Speedway, but her penalized action came in Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series race. After wrecking from contact by fellow-driver Kasey Kahne, Patrick exited her car and walked toward race cars that were circling the track under caution to express her displeasure with Kahne. As a result, she was fined $20,000 and placed under probation for the next four races.
Also, seven Sprint Cup Series teams were issued written warnings for inspection issues during the Fontana race weekend.
The No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota team of Mat Kenseth received a warning for for failing the laser inspection station twice during the pre-race inspection process on March 20th. Meanwhile, several teams had issues during pre-qualifying inspection on March 18. The No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota team of driver Matt Kenseth failed template inspection twice, while the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet team of Austin Dillon, the No. 20 team, the No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford team of Ryan Blaney and the No. 27 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet team of Paul Menard all failed twice in the laser inspection station.
The No. 95 Circle Sport-Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet team of Michael McDowell also received a written warning because the truck trailing arm on the car didn’t meet NASCAR’s specifications. The issue was discovered during opening-day inspection.
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