Busch may be penalized for instigating postrace incident with Edwards

Updated: August 24, 2008, 2:18 AM ET
By David Newton | ESPN.com

BRISTOL, Tenn. -- NASCAR officials will discuss on Monday if Kyle Busch will be penalized for instigating an incident with winner Carl Edwards on the cool-down lap of Saturday night's Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Busch, upset over contact from Edwards when he lost the lead with 30 laps remaining, rammed the right side of his car into the No. 99 as they came back towards the start/finish line after Edwards took the checkered flag for the sixth time this season.

Edwards retaliated by spinning Busch out.

NASCAR officials immediately summoned Busch to the hauler. Robin Pemberton, NASCAR's vice president of competition, said the situation will be further evaluated.

There is precedence for a penalty. Tony Stewart was fined $10,000 and placed on probation for five months after ramming Jeff Gordon's car on pit road in retaliation for a last-lap incident in the 2001 Bristol race.

Other drivers also have been fined for postrace incidents.

Edwards was not summoned by NASCAR, but he was stopped near the NASCAR hauler by Joe Gibbs Racing president J.D. Gibbs to talk about the exchange with his driver.

"He just explained to me that you reap what you sow, which I believe," Edwards said. "I explained to him that's why that happened that way. That's it. I have a lot of respect for him and the organization. They do a really good job and I really look up to them, so that's that."

Busch, who has a 212-point lead over Edwards in the standings, did not talk to reporters following the meeting with NASCAR president Mike Helton, Pemberton and series director John Darby.

Asked during his postrace press conference before the meeting if he expected to be fined, the point leader said, "It's NASCAR's decision and their discretion. He spun me out. So I just, you know, got into him a little bit and let him know that I didn't appreciate the way he passed me and he retaliated and ended up spinning me out."

JGR owner Joe Gibbs, also in the meeting with NASCAR, said only that "NASCAR is smart at what they do. They handle everything the right way."

David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at dnewtonespn@aol.com.

David Newton | email

ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter

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