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NASCAR Xfinity: No penalty for Noah Gragson after Atlanta incident

From FS1 video (race broadcast of EchoPark 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway).

By AMANDA VINCENT

NASCAR has announced that Noah Gragson will not be penalized for a pit-road incident during the EchoPark 250 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday. Gragson backed into Daniel Hemric on pit road, and that incident resulted in an altercation between the two drivers after the race in which punches were thrown.

“We reviewed the incident which occurred between the 9 (Gragson) and 18 (Hemric) cars on pit road during Saturday night’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, and met with Noah Gragson after the event,” a statement from NASACAR Senior Vice President of Competition Scott Miller on Sunday morning read. “A chain reaction of events led to the 18 and 9 both overshooting their pit stalls. The 9 ended up both long and out of his pit box to the outside, and needed to back up as far as possible to have any chance at fully pulling into his box. After reviewing the video, it is our judgment that the contact was not deliberate.”

Miller spoke of the incident, again, Monday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

“Noah found himself outside the pit box, and the only way he could really get back in was to back up as far as he could, and I think he misjudged it there and hit (Hemric’s car) and all kinds of mayhem ensued from there,” Miller said.

Gragson posted a video of the incident on Twitter (@NoahGragson) on Saturday night, explaining the contact.

“Here’s the full video. Penalty if right side tires are out of the box. Final pit stop. Judge for yourself,” Gragson said in his tweet of the video.

Hemric, though, stated after the race that the contact from Gragson was intentional. 

“Pretty simple. He (Gragson) had no idea what was going on out on the race track. We come down pit road and the guy pitted behind us when you accelerate when I was pulling into my box and it made me have to steer around the guy going to the 9’s box,” Hemric said. “I backed up,  and yes, it messed up both of our pit stops. I backed up, and he decided to put it in reverse and cram into the right-front fender and knock a hole in our Poppy Bank Toyota Supra nose. We had to pit again and fix it. That was completely deliberate, and it was absolutely ridiculous. Where I come from, you get your eye dotted when you do stuff like that.”

Hemric also responded to Gragson’s tweet of the video of the incident.

“The middle finger you gave me out the window was a pretty clear indication to me that you knew exactly what your intent was. Thanks for posting the facts @Noah Gragson,” Hemric (@DanielHemric) tweeted.

Both drivers finished in the top-10 Saturday at Atlanta. Gragson was fourth and Hemric ninth at the checkered flag of the EchoPark 250. Justin Allgaier won the race.

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Posted by on March 23, 2021. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR,Xfinity Series. 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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