Darrell Wallace penalized after admitting he spun on purpose at Texas Motor Speedway
Darrell Wallace Jr. escaped penalty after intentionally spinning to bring out a caution in the AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on November 3, but after admitting guilt to a reporter Friday at ISM Raceway, NASCAR issued a $50,000 fine and docked Wallace 50 driver points.
“Our team met with NASCAR officials this morning to discuss Darrell ‘Bubba' Wallace Jr.’s post-practice comments on Friday, November 8, concerning an on-track incident which occurred at the Texas Motor Speedway,” Richard Petty Motorsports Director of Competition Philippe Lopez said. “We fully understand NASCAR’s position and expectations of its competitors. NASCAR has a difficult job officiating race events, and we do not need to make the task more challenging. Wallace will not appeal the penalty and will direct his immediate focus to this weekend’s event at the ISM Raceway.”
Wallace suffered a flat tire during the Texas race and spun on lap 242 to bring out a caution during a cycle of green-flag pit stops. Kyle Larson was among the drivers caught a lap down, having already pitted under green. Larson gave up a top-five position to pit. He got back on the lead lap by taking a wave-around during the caution but was outside the top-10 at the checkered flag. Larson is among eight drivers remaining in the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs.
After the race, Larson accused Wallace of spinning intentionally to get a caution.
“Well that was very obvious,” Larson said. “The 43 [Wallace] was spinning on purpose. I mean, he turned right and then left to spin out. So when it’s blatant, that obvious, I think it’s pretty easy for them to notice it and make a call on it.”
At ISM Raceway on Friday, Larson said he and his #42 Chip Ganassi Racing team studied race data and that data showed that Wallace's spin was intentional. When questioned by reporter Dustin Long at ISM Raceway about Larson's comments, Wallace said he learned the move from Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski, Team Penske teammates and former Cup Series champions.
“I learned from Brad and Joey,” Wallace said.
A Logano spin a week earlier at Martinsville Speedway was called into question by NASCAR broadcaster and former NASCAR driver Dale Jarrett. Logano never admitted guilt, and he was not penalized.