NASCAR Truck Collection driver Matt Crafton obtained right into a struggle that left fellow competitor Nick Sanchez bruised and bloodied after their race at Talladega Superspeedway on Saturday.
Sanchez was seen on video bleeding from his nostril and threatening Crafton. He stated after the melee that he obtained sucker-punched whereas he was within the storage space.
Crafton defined his aspect of the difficulty Sunday in a collection of posts on X, previously Twitter. He began by telling his followers what wasn’t caught on the video that made the rounds on social media.
“First, let’s deal with the ‘sucker punch.’ Earlier than the cameras began rolling I approached Nick and stated “hey” when he circled I stated ‘what the —?!’ to which he appeared proper at me and threatened me,” Crafton began.
“That’s when all of it went to hell. I had his consideration, phrases have been exchanged, all earlier than something bodily passed off, so I didn’t ‘’sucker punch’ the man. There might not be video, however there have been loads of eye witnesses.”
Crafton stated that what was lacking was how Sanchez was driving throughout the race. Crafton obtained caught up in a wreck close to Sanchez throughout the truck race. He wouldn’t be capable to end the race.
“What individuals don’t consider is that he all however ‘sucker punched’ me at 200 mph. The best way he pushed my truck gave me no skill to get out of the scenario and he was instructed a number of instances throughout that race the way in which he was pushing individuals was going to trigger a wreck and going to get individuals harm. There’s a constant sample of sure drivers having a scarcity of respect on the observe, and it was time for somebody to say one thing.”
“Am I proud that it obtained bodily, no, however final time I checked everybody on that observe is a grown grownup. If a person seems at me and threatens me, I’m going to react. Particularly when tempers are already flared from being wrecked on the observe.”
Crafton then apologized.
“I apologize to my group, my sponsors and companions, my household, and the NASCAR neighborhood for the negativity and for taking consideration away from a very good day of racing at Talladega.”
Sanchez was among the many drivers in search of an edge within the closing elimination earlier than the Championship 4 21 days away. Sanchez was within the combine heading into Talladega and made contact with Crafton’s automobile coming down the entrance stretch with three laps to go.
The contact triggered a giant wreck. Crafton wasn’t capable of end the race. Sanchez completed seventh and jumped to fourth place within the standings.
A video from Frontstretch confirmed Sanchez being held again after a brawl.
“I’m gonna f—ing kill you in Homestead,” Sanchez shouted, referencing the ultimate race of the spherical of eight. “You f—ed with the flawed man mother—er.”
Sanchez was left bloodied.
He left the infield care heart with some scratches on his nostril and defined to reporters what occurred.
“I used to be strolling again to the hauler, tapped on my again, obtained punched within the face,” he stated. “Low-cost shot, however it’s what it’s. I’m all for preventing, however no low cost pictures. I obtained an affordable shot. By no means had an opportunity to get him again. It’s what it’s. It’s part of racing.”
Brett Moffitt got here away with the victory after beginning the Love’s RV Cease 250 in thirty first. He led 22 laps on his technique to a victory.
Two races stay on the Truck Collection schedule this season — Homestead-Miami for the Baptist Well being 200 after which the championship race at Phoenix on Nov. 3.