On Wednesday morning, Hendrick Motorsports General Manager Doug Duchardt announced that the organization would be paying the fines incurred by members of the Nos. 5 and 24 teams during Sunday night’s fight after the AAA Texas 500. In addition, the team is not issuing any internal sanctions against the four crewmembers that were fined and suspended by NASCAR on Tuesday.
Duchardt got right to the point when it comes to the reason why the move was undertaken.
“Moving forward, we, as a team will incur [the fines] and not put that on the crewmembers,” Duchardt said on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “That whole situation was basically going to be a discussion…it was getting ready to disperse. Then, Kevin [Harvick] pushed Brad [Keselowski] in, then it all got started.
“I felt that our guys were conducting themselves [normally] and everyone thought it was going to be [a situation] where Brad and Jeff [Gordon] talk, then it escalated,” Duchardt continued. “It’s unfortunate, but we have to pay the penalties and move on.”
While Hendrick Motorsports is willingly covering the fines incurred, they also are not appealing the suspensions given to the four crewmembers. Dwayne Doucette, Jeremy Fuller and Jason Ingle are suspended from NASCAR for the next six races. That will mean that they’re out until after Las Vegas in March, while Dean Mozingo has to sit out until after Daytona in February.