Kurt Busch's Profanity-Laced Tirade Goes Viral and NASCAR Issues Fine

Sandra MacWattersCorrespondent INovember 23, 2011

HOMESTEAD, FL - NOVEMBER 19:  Kurt Busch, driver of the #22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge, leans over next to his car in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 19, 2011 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Jerry Markland/Getty Images

The Penske Dodge driven by Kurt Busch lost its transmission after only a few laps in the Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway and it resulted in damage to Tony Stewart's grille on the No. 14.

It was indeed an abrupt ending to Busch's day and the Chase driver certainly had reason to be upset about his car.

One thing those in the media learn is that talking to a mad driver immediately after an incident is much like walking on a minefield.

ESPN reporter Dr. Jerry Punch was attempting to do his job and obtain an interview with Busch outside his hauler.

Busch was asked to wait and he didn't take well to the interview or the delay with the interview that was going to be live on ESPN.

The driver of the No. 22 launched an expletive-laced tirade toward Punch, who finally cancelled the interview as an agitated Busch walked away still firing off comments unfit for print.

The event in the garage area was captured and uploaded to YouTube. The language is graphic, but should you wish to view the video, click here.

Busch did issue an apology and Penske Racing issued a statement basically saying they did not condone Busch's behavior, with apologies to media partners, sponsors and fans. They will review the incident internally.

Dr. Punch is without a doubt one of the most respected pit reporters in the sport and he was just trying to do his job for ESPN and the viewers.

Penske Racing may have reached a limit on the verbal abuse Busch continues to dish out and want to rein in their driver. Most of his expletives have been directed toward his crew chief and team.

Steve Addington, his crew chief in the 2011 season, departed Penske Racing on Monday.

Update:

NASCAR has fined Kurt Busch $50,000 for his actions at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

NASCAR determined Busch violated section 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing and inappropriate hand gesture; abusive language) of the 2011 NASCAR rulebook.

In issuing the penalty, NASCAR cited Kurt Busch's "poor judgment in making and inappropriate hand gesture" when he pulled his car into the garage area early in the race after it experienced transmission problems.

In addition, NASCAR said Kurt Busch showed "disrespect to a media member," an incident that followed similar inappropriate media confrontations earlier in the season.

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