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Xfinity drivers fight after Martinsville race

Short track racer Josh Berry hung on to win the rain-delayed Cook Out 250 at Martinsville, scoring his first career Xfinity Series victory.

Video from showed Gray Gaulding and Joe Graf Jr. fight after Sunday’s Xfinity Series race at Martinsville Speedway.

The video started with Gaulding on his back on the ground as others tried to separate Graf and Gaulding. NASCAR officials pulled the drivers away from each other.

Gaulding was running behind Graf Jr. when there was contact on Lap 176 of the 250-lap race that sent Graf’s car into the car of Blaine Perkins and both crashed.

“Oh yeah, I 100% wrecked him, and I’d do it again all over again,” Gaulding told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “I might have to do it again when we get back to Talladega. He’s just a moving chicane every week. Just like today, I’m not trying to throw any shots because talking about him is pointless because the poor kid can’t get out of his way.

“I think for me, it’s just like early in the race, we get the green. He starts behind me. We’re just trying to settle in and on a restart he absolutely bulldozes through me, puts me up three lanes and I lost like 15 spots. It’s funny how he forgets that. His memory ain’t all there, I guess.”

Gaulding said he was sent to the NASCAR hauler.

Graf told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that he approached Gaulding after the race to discuss the incident.

“There with about 75 laps to go, Gray just wrecked us and (Perkins), drove us off into the corner and flat out-wrecked us, ending our day,” Graf told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “I went to have words with him afterward and then he mouthed off to me and there were some punches thrown. I landed a couple.

“The garage is just loaded with drivers who pretend they’re tough, but they’re going to find out how tough they are if they race me like that and then run their mouth at me. Just ask Gray how he’s doing now. I’m sure he needs some ice packs.”

Gaulding explained to SiriusXM NASCAR Radio his view of what happened:

“I was just walking back to the hauler and (Graf) starts cussing me out,” Gaulding said. “I literally started laughing. I think that’s what made him upset. I was laughing because he’s very awkward, and I didn’t know if he was serious or not.

“When we were done talking, he started swinging. What’s kind of funny to me is like if we want to scrap and you want to fight, let’s go right now. You give me the look, we’ll go. I thought we were leaving the conversation. All of a sudden, he glazed my head, which I was not phased by that at all. So, I tackled him and we went on the ground. Obviously all the officials did their work.

“It’s really funny ... I have to say to the poor kid, he’s got a lot to learn. When you drive the way he’s currently driving, he’s going to get wrecked. I’m very, very happy that I was the one to wreck him today.”

Graf said he was upset that Gaulding suggested his contact was payback.

“I went up to him,” Graf said. “I was still pretty upset. I asked him why he wrecked us. He tried to say he was just paying us back for earlier in the race. I don’t recall any time earlier in the race where I drove him like that or wrecked him like that. I just wasn’t having it. He tried to blame it on me. That was definitely not my fault.”

Graf said he met with NASCAR officials after the incident.

Gaulding finished 21st. Graf placed 38th in the 40-car field.

Josh Berry won the race for his first career Xfinity victory.