FORT WORTH, Texas – Jimmie Johnson won his third consecutive Texas fall race Sunday, but a brawl between Brad Keselowski, Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick seemed to overshadow the event.
After the conclusion of the Eliminator Round at Texas Motor Speedway, Gordon immediately walked over to Keselowski in the pit row and confronted him. Several punches were thrown in the brawl with NASCAR officials in the middle of the drivers and crew members.
Both Keselowski and Gordon walked away from the fight with bloody faces.
During the race, Gordon was leading the restart on lap 335 and took the outside lane. Keselowski drove through the gap making contact with Gordon’s left tire, which caused his car to spin out. Gordon ended up finishing 29th.
In post race interviews, Keselowski defended his actions on the track.
“We were just racing for the win. I didn’t wreck him, and just raced him hard. He left a hole. Everything you watch in racing, you leave a hole, you’re supposed to go for it,” said Keselowski.
“The way he races, I don’t know how he ever won a championship. This is why everyone is fighting with him,” Gordon said. “There wasn’t any conversation. You can’t have a conversation with him. There’s big consequences. To me, it’s just a bunch of crap. The kid is just doing stuff way over his head.”
Six-time Chase for the Sprint Cup champion Johnson was eliminated despite Sunday’s win due to the new Chase format.
Texas was the second consecutive Chase race won by a driver already eliminated from title contention.