IRL fines Matsuura for profane interview after crash
INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indy Racing League fined driver Kosuke Matsuura an undisclosed amount of money Tuesday for using profanity during a television interview after a crash in Sunday's St. Petersburg Grand Prix.
Matsuura was struck from behind by Jeff Simmons during a multi-car crash on the first lap, causing considerable damage to his car. He rejoined the race after the car was repaired, but he was 14 laps behind the leaders and wound up 17th.
"I was upset about the crash, but I didn't need to use the language I did," Matsuura said in a statement released by Panther Racing after the Japanese driver met with IRL president Brian Barnhart.
"Since the next race is at my home country, I wanted to return to Japan with good result and enjoy the Indy Japan race, so I am very disappointed with what happened," Matsuura said. "Everybody on my Panther team was frustrated, but I should have expressed my disappointment in a better way. I'm sorry."
The third race of the season is the Indy Japan 300 on April 21.
"Kosuke was frustrated, like all of us were, about what happened on the first lap of the race," Panther co-owner John Barnes said. "He knows he should use better word choice in the future."
Matsuura was the 2004 Indianapolis 500 and IndyCar Series rookie of the year.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press