NASCAR fines Ricky Stenhouse Jr. for fight, suspends three other people

NASCAR has fined Ricky Stenhouse Jr. $75,000 for punching Kyle Busch after Sunday night’s NASCAR All-Star Race and suspended three others, including Stenhouse's father, involved in the altercation.

Kyle Busch was not penalized.

NASCAR suspended Keith Matthews, engine tuner for Stenhouse's team, four Cup races through the June 16 race at Iowa Speedway.

NASCAR suspended Clint Myrick, a mechanic for Stenhouse's team, eight Cup races through the July 14 race at Pocono Raceway.

NASCAR also indefinitely suspended Richard Stenhouse, father of Ricky Stenhouse Jr., for his actions in the fight.

"When you have crew members and family members that put their hands on our athletes, our drivers, we're going to react," said Elton Sawyer, NASCAR senior vice president of competition, Wednesday morning on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

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Trouble started at the beginning of last weekend's All-Star Race. Stenhouse made a move to go into the middle, putting Busch three-wide near the wall. Busch hit the wall on the opening lap. He caught Stenhouse and hit him in the back, causing Stenhouse to crash.

Stenhouse parked his wrecked car in Busch's pit stall and told Busch's crew chief, Randall Burnett, to tell Busch he would see him after the race. With no tunnel or bridge, Stenhouse could not leave the track. When the race ended, Stenhouse waited for Busch at Busch's hauler. After a brief heated discussion with Busch, Stenhouse punched Busch.

Sawyer explained why Stenhouse was fined $75,000.

"I will say when you wait, you know, 198 laps and you make those decisions that were made, we're going to react to that," he said. "There could have been different decisions made. ... We want the two drivers to be able to have their time to express their differences, but again, once it escalates to where there's been a physical altercation there, again, we're going to react."

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Sawyer also explained why there was no penalty for Busch, whose retaliation on the track led to Stenhouse hitting the wall on the second lap of the event.

"If we see something, we have proven over time, that if (we see a driver) intentionally hooking someone in the right rear, we've reacted to that," Sawyer said Wednesday morning on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. "We really as a sanctioning body would, and we do, stay out of the on-track incidents unless we see something that blatantly comes back to us that we need to react to.

"In this case, we reviewed it. We looked at it. We listened to audio. Again, hard racing but also totally appreciate where the two drivers stand on it. We'll let those guys decide and agree to disagree."

NASCAR also announced Wednesday other penalties unrelated to the fight.

Dawson Backus, rear tire changer on Sammy Smith's truck at North Wilkesboro, was suspended from NASCAR through this weekend's events at Charlotte Motor Speedway for a violation of the sanctioning body's protective clothing/equipment policy.

Jeff Stankiewicz, crew chief for Grant Enfinger, was fined $2,500 for a lug nut not safe and secure on Enfinger's truck after the race.

Rowan Mason has been indefinitely suspended for violating NASCAR's Substance Abuse Policy.