Ryan Newman and Tony Stewart are both under scrutiny today as NASCAR officials announced that they plan to have a talk with both drivers after a multi-car crash incident in Saturday's Federated Auto Parts 400 race sparked the drivers' harsh comments spoken during the after-game interview with NBC Sports.
NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer Steve O’Donnell said on SiriusXM that the organization is very disappointed at how things turned out and said that the incident wouldn't go unpunished.
When Former Friends Clash
In Saturday’s Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond, the former friends turned rivals were both racing. Newman needed to win the race more as he needed to qualify for the Sprint Cup Chase while Stewart was already in the upcoming race because of his early win at Sonoma.
It should be noted that Ryan Newman drove for Stewart-Haas Racing from 2009 to 2013 and the two racers had been closed friends for long years. However, all this changed when the two caused a multi-car crash after they seemed to intentionally bump each other's vehicles.
Bad Blood, Friendship Lost
The fight didn't end on the track, as the after-game interviews proved hotter than the actual race. Newman called Stewart a bipolar old man that should be retiring rather than racing. Stewart retaliated saying that Newman can't get a win while he is still racing and that's why Newman wishes that he should resign.
After the drivers' comments have been heard by NASCAR officials, the organization stated that it plans to have a talk with both players.
“Certainly too late for us to do anything in terms of a reaction at-track after you hear the comments from both drivers, disappointing in terms of how that played out and what was said, on the air," O’Donnell said.
Check out the interview of Ryan Newman below.
NASCAR Planning Sanctions
Due to the altercation and other issues encountered in the qualifying Sprint Cup Chase, NASCAR officials are now studying a plan on how to pay pilots violations and disrespect.
The aim of the plan, they hope to be completed this week, but is not yet written, will strike a balance between serious issues and ensuring that a team does not go unpunished. If the plan is adapted, it would be put into effect before the start of the Chase, the next weekend at Chicagoland Speedway, and would also be apply to all three national series.