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NASCAR Hits Bubba Wallace with $50,000 Fine for 'Behavioral' Violation

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NASCAR Hits Bubba Wallace with $50,000 Fine Icon Sportswire - Getty Images
  • Bubba Wallace was angry after eventual race winner Bowman hit him on lap 25 of the race that was shorted by darkness from 75 to 58 laps.

  • Notably, NASCAR did not issue any penalty against Chase Elliott, who displayed his anger with a post-race swerve and subsequent “brake-check” toward with Daniel Suarez.

  • The Wallace penalty marked the second time in as many weeks NASCAR has handed out a $50,000 fine after contact.


That brief post-race swerve into race winner Alex Bowman during Sunday afternoon’s “cool-down” lap after the Chicago Street Race has cost Bubba Wallace $50,000.

After two days to think about it, NASCAR announced the fine early Wednesday morning. The sanctioning body noted the penalty came under Section 4.4 B&D in its Member Code of Conduct, and is considered a “Behavioral” violation.

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NASCAR issued the penalty statement without comment or explanation. Notably, it did not issue any penalty against Chase Elliott, who displayed his anger with a post-race swerve and subsequent “brake-check” toward with Daniel Suarez. Their in-race contact came when Elliott pushed Suarez aside in one corner, then Suarez pushed him aside in the next.

Clearly, Wallace was angry after Bowman hit him on lap 25 of the race that was shorted by darkness from 75 to 58 laps. The rear-end contact knocked Wallace into the wall. After running well much of the day, the 23XI Toyota driver finished 13th. Bowman’s victory snapped an 80-race winless streak and made him eligible for the 16-driver, 10-race championship-deciding Playoffs that begin Sept. 8 near Atlanta.

Seconds after the checkered flag, Wallace drove to the right side of Bowman’s No. 48 Chevrolet and turned left, forcing Bowman almost into the driver’s-side wall. After the race, Bowman repeatedly apologized for his contact with Wallace.

“I have to apologize again to the 23 guys,” Bowman said. “I messed up and was trying to get my windshield wiper on and missed a corner and ruined their whole day. I hate that and I’m still embarrassed. I was focused on the windshield wiper, missed the corner and cleaned him out. I locked all four tires up and slid right into him. I messed up and absolutely ruined his day.”

NASCAR issued the Wallace penalty without comment or explanation. It did not issue any penalty against Chase Elliott, who displayed his anger with a similar post-race swerve and subsequent “brake-check” toward with Daniel Suarez.

They had tangled during the race – Elliott into Suarez, then Suarez back into Elliott a corner later – but both drivers continued. Suarez finished 11th and Elliott 21st, and both are Playoff eligible based on wins earlier in the season.

After the race, Elliott went to find Suarez on pit road. He initially seemed angry at how Suarez had raced him, but later seemed to accept Suarez’s explanation. They seemed to come to an agreement, and parted after a brief embrace.

The Wallace penalty marked the second time in as many weeks NASCAR has issued a $50,000 fine after contact. It also fined rookie Carson Hocevar and took 25 points after he hit and spun Harrison Burton under caution during the June 30 race in Nashville.