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NASCAR Cup Chicago

NASCAR fines Bubba Wallace $50k for post-race Chicago clash with Bowman

No points deduction for ‘behavioral penalty’ after post-checker door slam, following earlier collision with Bowman that had spun him

Bubba Wallace has been penalized for running into race winner Alex Bowman on the cool-down lap following the conclusion of last weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series race at the Chicago Street Course.

Shortly after Hendrick Motorsports driver Bowman took the checkered flag in Sunday’s darkness-shortened race, Wallace drove up alongside him and slammed into the side of his No. 48 Chevrolet.

The move was in apparent displeasure over an incident between the drivers earlier in the race. On Lap 25, Bowman clipped the side of Wallace’s No. 23 23XI Racing Toyota and sent him into a spin, which also forced Trackhouse’s Daniel Suarez to come to a halt in the No. 99 car.

Wallace, who is fighting to make the playoffs, had started sixth and was running in the top 10 at the time. He was never in contention for the win after the incident and finished 13th.

Bubba Wallace, 23XI Racing, McDonald's Toyota Camry

Bubba Wallace, 23XI Racing, McDonald's Toyota Camry

Photo by: Rusty Jarrett / NKP / Motorsport Images

On Wednesday, NASCAR chose to fine Wallace $50,000 but did not penalize him any driver points as it did last week with an incident involving Carson Hocevar at Nashville, when the Spire Motorsports-run rookie turned Harrison Burton under a caution.

That resulted in a number of drivers having to take evasive action, while safety vehicles were also on track to deal with the original crash that befell Brad Keselowski.

Per NASCAR, Wallace violated Sections 4.4B of the NASCAR Member Code of Conduct, calling it a behavioral penalty. 

After the race Sunday, Bowman said he didn’t believe Wallace deserved a penalty.

“He has every right to be mad; I’d be mad, too,” Bowman said. “I tried to call him during the rain delay, and I shot him a text.

“Nothing I can do to make it better, and I’m sure us winning probably only makes it worse.

“I just messed up and ruined his day, so I hate that.”

Wallace was docked points, as well as fined, in 2019 for admitting that he intentionally spun to bring out a caution at Texas, when driving for Richard Petty Motorsports.

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