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Two RCR Crew Members Arrested After Fight At Richmond

Nelson Piquet Jr [1]During the the ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond International Raceway, Brian Scott was involved in a crash with Justin Allgaier and Austin Dillon. He suffered minor damage.

In the closing laps of the race, Scott was limping to a 15th-place finish when he got together with Nelson Piquet Jr, which knocked Scott out of the groove in Turn 2. Scott dropped from 15th down to 20th.

On the cool down lap, Scott, of Richard Childress Racing,  cut in front of Piquet, or Turner Scott Motorsports.

When the two cars stopped on pit road and exited their cars, Piquet pushed and kicked Scott, a kick Scott called “below the belt.” The two crews almost came to blows.

Scott said:

I was just showing my displeasure with him after the race and then things escalated. I went to talk to him, I was a little heated and the camera probably shows it, but he kicks me right below the belt, which I think is a below-the-belt type of shot.

Scott and Piquet were called to the NASCAR hauler.

Evidently, an earlier incident between Dillon, also of RCR, and Allgaier, of TSM, caused the tension between the two teams. The incident between Scott and Piquet only intensified the tension.

Later, Henrico County police were called to the driver/owner lot at Richmond and two RCR crew members were arrested. Michael A. Scearce and Thomas F. Costello, of RCR’s No. 2 team, the car driven by Scott, were taken into custody for their part in an alleged assault in which two adult males were injured. Both were charged with misdemeanors and released.

Richard Childress talked about the incident:

I didn’t witness what took place last night outside of the race track. Our team members were walking to their cars and words were exchanged with members from another team, which led to an altercation. I am still learning all the exact details and, because it did happen outside of the track, local authorities became involved. We are working with them to resolve this matter.

Turner Scott Motorsports released a statement:

Turner Scott Motorsports can confirm that an incident occurred near the Driver/Owner parking lot of Richmond International Raceway following the NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Friday, April 26th. Several members of another race team confronted a group that included Nelson Piquet Jr., resulting in the arrest of two individuals from the other race team. TSM will have no further comment on the incident as the matter is an active case with the Henrico Police Department.

Update: NASCAR found that Richard Childress Racing crew members Thomas Costello and Michael Scearce were in violation of Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) of the NASCAR rule book. Both crew members were suspended for four Nationwide Series events, and both were each fined  $15,000. They were also put on NASCAR probation until the end of the calendar year.

Update 2: Richard Childress Racing appealed the penalties handed down by NASCAR. After reviewing the facts,  the National Stock Car Racing Appeals Panel decided to uphold the original penalties. RCR can now appeal this decision to the ational Stock Car Racing Chief Appellate Officer John Middlebrook.