Yesterday’s AdventHealth 400 at Kansas Speedway went down to a last-lap duel between Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson. Hamlin tapped Larson’s rear bumper to put him in the backstretch wall and take his first NASCAR Cup Series victory of the season. However, the race’s dramatic conclusion was overshadowed by a fight on pit road between Trackhouse Racing driver Ross Chastain and Legacy Motor Club’s Noah Gragson.
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During the race, Gragson was running side-by-side with Chastain through turn 4 and was forced up into the wall. The Legacy Motor Club driver would immediately door Chastain’s N0. 1 Camaro as the pair continued down the frontstretch. Chastain finished fifth, and Gragson crossed the finish line five laps behind in 29th. Gragson’s frustration wouldn’t go away after the race ended, and he confronted the Trackhouse driver on pit road.
The conversation went south quickly as Gragson grabbed Chastain by the firesuit. Chastain tried to back out of the confrontation while warning Gragson to stop. After Gragson shouted, “What the fuck is your fucking problem?”, the watermelon farmer thew a right cross into Gragson’s jaw. Onlookers quickly intervened to pull Gragson away as Chastain smirked.
After the fight, both drivers gave their two cents to Fox Sports about what happened out on track. Chastain said:
“I got tight off of [turn] four, for sure. Noah and I have a very similar attitude on the racetrack and we train together, we prepare together, we know every little bit about each other. I definitely crowded him up off of four, and he took a swipe at us in three, and then came down and grabbed a hold of me. A very big man once told me we have a no-push policy here at Trackhouse.”
“Just got fenced by the No. 1. He took care of us at Talladega. We’re Chevrolet teammates and he didn’t work with us there. And then fenced us here and I’m just over it. Nobody else has the balls to at least confront him, so if you don’t at least just grab him and do something, he’s just going to keep doing it, and I’m over it. It’s the second time.”
Chastain has endeared himself to NASCAR fans with his watermelon-smashing victory celebration and last year’s desperation “Hail Melon!” wall-ride maneuver. Though, the watermelon farmer continues to rub many of his competitors the wrong way with his aggressive and occasionally reckless driving style.