FORT WORTH, Texas — NASCAR met with drivers Ross Chastain and Brendan Gaughan after they were involved in a scuffle following Saturday night’s Xfinity race at Texas Motor Speedway.
The incident happened behind pit road and victory lane where non-playoff cars parked after the race.
“I was just getting out of the car and was sitting on the door and was getting ready to swing my legs out and there he was,’’ Chastain said of Gaughan. “He just came right at me with his guys. There were just swings from that point on.’’
Gaughan declined to discuss the incident when asked about it. Asked if he threw a right hook, Gaughan said: “I’m a lefty” and walked away.
Chastain said “there were no cameras (of the incident) … it would make me look better if there was, but, unfortunately, I’m sure there wasn’t for the start. Some derogatory things were said beyond just cuss words.’’
Chastain wouldn’t say what was said to him.
Chastain said what happened on track led to the off-track incident.
“There was a slow car we were passing on the backstretch and (Gaughan) tried to split the middle,’’ Chastain said. “I wasn’t going to let him because it’s so much track position, there was clean track in front of us. We stayed side-by-side into (Turn) 3. I tried to arc from the bottom, and he tried to pinch me.
“I got really loose, saved it. All good. From then on, he was out to wreck me. My spotter could tell. (Gaughan) tried to get me in (Turns) 1 and 2.
“That’s just not acceptable. The speeds we’re going, we’ve seen guys get upside down in the catch fence on purpose before. I do not want to collect on my life insurance policy at 24 years old. That was my biggest thing in the (NASCAR) trailer, that I was upset with that needed to be taken care of.
“The off-the-track stuff, hey, I’ll go out anywhere and do what we need to do to defend myself and my crew. The on-track is unacceptable at 180 mph.’’
NASCAR had no comment on the matter. It continues to investigate the incident after speaking to both drivers and others involved.
Gaughan finished 17th. Chastain finished 19th.
In April, Chastain punched Jeremy Clements during a red flag in the Xfinity race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Chastain said he reacted with a punch when Clements grabbed him from behind and spun him around.