Spencer allegedly punched Busch
BROOKLYN, Mich. -- NASCAR driver Jimmy Spencer could face assault charges after allegedly attacking fellow competitor Kurt Busch following Sunday's GFS Marketplace 400.
As the drivers came onto pit lane at Michigan International Speedway following the checkered flag, Spencer drove into the rear of Busch's car and spun it around.
Witnesses said Spencer then got out of his car, raced up to Busch's car and punched Busch several times in the face. Sheriff's deputies pulled Spencer away and took him to the NASCAR hauler.
The witnesses said Busch, who finished 18th, was holding a bloody towel to his face when he entered the track medical facility.
Jeff Patterson, spokesman for the Lenawee County Sheriff's Dept., confirmed to The Associated Press that his department was investigating an assault charge against Spencer, who finished 26th.
Both drivers left the track without comment.
This is the latest episode in a feud that was sparked when Busch bumped past Spencer in March 2002 at Bristol Motor Speedway to get his first Winston Cup victory.
There have been several on-course incidents since, but no physical confrontations. On Sunday, their cars appeared to bump several times when Busch passed Spencer late in the race.
"NASCAR spoke with both drivers about the incident that occurred today. If we should take any actions, we'll announce it at an appropriate time," NASCAR spokesman Mike Zizzo said. "They spoke with NASCAR inside (the hauler) and (NASCAR officials) are going over the incident right now."
Jack Roush, who owns Busch's car, said, "Kurt says that his car ran out of gas and stopped running ... Jimmy then ran into him and came up and punched him through the window. There were words exchanged. I don't know what was said. We're going to let the authorities handle it.
Roush said the local sheriff's department was taking statements from the drivers since the incident occurred after the race.
"Of course, it's primarily in (NASCAR president) Mike Helton's hands to decide what he needs to do with Jimmy after these repeated assaults that he's had, either on the racetrack or the rest of it," Roush said. "Jimmy has had a history of being overly aggressive. NASCAR has taken a position on what he should do and what he should not do."
Jeff Miles, the transport driver for Spencer, said, "I know he tried to put Jimmy in the fence on the straightaway."
Robby Gordon, another Winston Cup driver, offered to pay Spencer's fine and said Busch "had it coming for a while."