Xfinity drivers Ross Chastain, Jeremy Clements involved in confrontation during red flag
Xfinity Series drivers Ross Chastain and Jeremy Clements were involved in a pit road confrontation during a red flag for rain Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway.
The moment, a culmination of “off-the-track” incidents between the drivers and a run-in during the Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300, resulted in Clements visiting the infield care center during the red flag. Clements was seen leaving the medical center wearing sunglasses. He returned to his car.
Chastain, who drives the No. 4 Chevrolet for JD Motorsports, recounted his side of the incident to Fox Sports 1 and admitted he instigated it during the race while running with Clements’ No. 51 Chevrolet.
“With our two teams, we run together every week, nose to tail, one in front of the other, and we’ve run into each other for three years now,” Chastain said. “Had a bunch of off-the-track stuff happen, I’ve been good with it. Feel like I’ve been the bigger man in a lot of the cases. I started it today. Got into it when (Darrell Wallace Jr.) and (Brennan Poole) were trying to wreck each other. Getting into (Turn) 1, I pushed (Clements) up, went on by him and ran the bottom and pulled away.
“Then the caution came out for rain and he got on my back bumper on the frontstretch and tried to wreck us. I told my owner Johnny, ‘When we get out, I’m going to go talk to him, but I’m not doing anything in the car. I don’t want to crash a race car.
“We got out, and I kind of forgot about it to be honest. Somebody grabbed me by my shoulders and kind of pushed me. I just turned around and saw who it was. I hope he realizes now that he can talk, we can talk, but you can’t grab someone by the shoulders. That happened before and I said right then I wouldn’t let it happen again. What’s done is done. ... But I didn’t want to go look for it, but I’ve got to stand up for myself at some point.”
In 2015, Ryan Reed came up behind Chastain and shoved him after the Xfinity race at Iowa Speedway.
NASCAR has said it will meet with both drivers after the race. Chastain was running 19th and Clements in 20th when the red flag came out on Lap 162.