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NASCAR Truck: Angela Ruch’s husband stirs controversy again

SPARTA, KENTUCKY – JULY 11: Angela Ruch, driver of the #00 Toyota, looks on prior to the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series Buckle Up In Your Truck 225 at Kentucky Speedway on July 11, 2020 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

By AMANDA VINCENT

Michael Ruch, husband of NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series driver Angela Ruch, has been fined $10,000 by NASCAR for violation of COVID-19 protocols during the Texas Motor Speedway race weekend. The Truck Series raced at Texas on July 18.

Ruch became the second person fined by NASCAR for a violation of COVID-19 protocols. Anthony Clements, owner of Jeremy Clements Racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, also was fined $10,000 following the Xfinity Series race at Kentucky Speedway earlier in the month.

NASCAR issued one other fine following the Texas Motor Speedway race weekend that also included NASCAR Xfinity and Cup series races. Drew Blickensderfer, crew chief for Michael McDowell in the Cup Series, was fined $10,000 for an improperly secured lug nut after the Cup Series race on July 19.

According to a tweet from Ruch (@MF_Ruch) his fine wasn’t the result of a COVID-19 protocol infraction. He insisted he was penalized because of police officers at the track who wanted to have their photo taken with Angela Ruch’s truck.

“Just so everyone is crystal clear. NASCAR has officially said that they are not fining me for bringing in police officers nor did I bring in police officers,” Michael Ruch tweeted. “The officers mentioned didn’t jump a fence to get into the infield they knocked on the front door and were invited in. They went to the track security told them who they were and asked if they could take a picture with the truck. I’m assuming since the race was well over by then, that track employee didn’t see any harm and allowed the officers into the infield. The police officers never once flashed a badge. A NASCAR official then detained all of us for 45 minutes and asked for the local police to arrest the officers. I did receive a $10,000 fine however for what HASCAR states as not following the COVID protocol. However, I was on an official roster known by NASCAR, passed the medical exam that day to be in the infield and I was also invited by NASCAR per an email from NASCAR into a suite. I watched the race from the suite, then came back down into the infield to get my wife to leave. NASCAR is stating that is the reason I was fined. These are the facts construe them as you wish.”

Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage, though, disputed Michael Ruch’s claim across two tweets of his own.

“Nope. They flashed their badges to get in,” Gossage (@EddieGossage) tweeted of the officers. “NASCAR busted them for not having credentials & not going thru screening. Fined Truck Series Racer’s Angela Ruch’s husband $10,000 for sneaking them in. Bad they flashed badges to get in restricted area, worse they’re lying.

“I imagine they could be in trouble with the department they represent for misuse of their badge. This is a NASCAR violation, not a criminal activity. Fort Worth Police weren’t involved. These folks should be ashamed.”

Texas Motor Speedway also released an official announcement.

“Texas Motor Speedway is fully aware of the situation that occurred July 18 at our facility involving the No. 00 Reaume Brothers Racing team,” the statement from TMS read. “Two men gained access to the speedway infield, which was a restricted area due to the COVID-19 protocols. They were not on NASCASR’s restricted credential list, did not go through the mandatory COVID-19 screening process and were asked to leave the premises. Texas Motor Speedway fully supports all law enforcement and first responders.”

Michael Ruch was listed on the Roster of the No. 00 Reaume Brothers Racing team’s roster as the hauler driver, as he has been since NASCAR returned to racing from the coronavirus pandemic, even though he is not the team’s hauler driver. The team didn’t have a hauler driver listed on its rosters for the first two races of the season before the coronavirus-related break from racing. Since the team hasn’t listed an actual hauler driver on its rosters, it’s assumed that a team member who serves another purpose on the team and is rostered under that other position is the actual hauler driver. Other teams, like ThorSport Racing and Kyle Busch Motorsports, list two hauler drivers on their rosters.

Drivers’ family members have not been allowed to travel to races since the return to racing, and properly credentialed team members have been restricted to their work areas at the track.

Michael Ruch isn’t a stranger to controversy in the 2020 Truck Series season. Earlier in the year, when Cup Series driver Kevin Harvick offered a “bounty” for a Cup Series driver who could beat Cup Series driver Kyle Busch in a Truck Series race, Ruch made disparaging remarks about Harvick, his wife DeLana Harvick, Busch and his wife Samantha Busch via Twitter. Ruch also claimed that he had secured a ride at Kyle Busch Motorsports for his wife Angela but Busch’s wife ruined the deal.

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Posted by on July 24, 2020. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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