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Nov. 25, 2011: Kurt Busch fined

- jutter@charlotteobserver.com
Friday, Nov. 25, 2011

There was no Thanksgiving pardon for Kurt Busch.

NASCAR fined Busch $50,000 Friday for incidents which occurred during Sunday's Sprint Cup Series finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida.

After his car's transmission broke on Lap 13, Busch drove into the garage area for repairs and the in-car camera shot shown on ESPN showed Busch using an obscene gesture.

Once out of his car and while waiting to do a live interview with ESPN, Busch continually launched into profanity-laced conversations with ESPN's Dr. Jerry Punch, who finally stopped the interview. A fan's videotape of the incident was posted on YouTube.

In its penalty release, NASCAR cited Busch's "poor judgment in making an inappropriate hand gesture" when he drove his car into the garage.

In addition, NASCAR said Busch showed "disrespect towards a media member," an incident that followed similar inappropriate media confrontations earlier in the season.

Busch most recently had confrontations with two media members during the September race weekend at Richmond, Va., for which he apologized.

Busch, along with Penske Racing, issued separate apologies this week for the incidents Sunday.

"These actions do not represent Penske Racing and are inconsistent with the company's standards for behavior, respect for others and professionalism. This matter is being reviewed internally," the Penske statement said.

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