Tony Stewart, who won Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Martinsville, told USA Today afterward that the 18 caution flags thrown during the contest were inexcusable and that the NASCAR "have-at it,-boys" philosophy should extend to the boxing ring.
"NASCAR is going to have to, at some point, make these drivers be responsible for their actions," Stewart said when asked by reporter Nate Ryan to comment on what was going on out there. Every little bump, accidental or otherwise, was met with instant payback, it seemed.
Stewart was not impressed.
"Let them get their butt kicked," he said. "That's what used to happen in the old days. You let a guy get his butt kicked once or twice, he'll quit doing stupid stuff like that.
"As soon as they get done with the victory celebration, set a boxing ring on the front stretch, give the fans a real show they paid for. Have a boxing match with each of the guys that had a beef with each other."
Stewart said he was once a hothead but that the late Dale Earnhardt and the retired Dale Jarrett slapped some sense into him.
"The veterans would grab you, pull you out of the car, rip your head off talking to you (and) intimidate you into understanding why you didn't do that.
"I used to be as bad as anybody about taking a cheap shot, but (after Earnhardt and Jarret got finished with him) you realize that it's not about the two guys driving the cars. There's a car owner that spends a lot of money. There's a bunch of crew guys that put a lot of heart and soul into these cars. At times we forget about that."
Stewart, who’s part-owner of his own racing team, trails Chase for the Championship leader Carl Edwards by eight points with three races to go. Stewart, a two-time NASCAR Cup champion, is on a roll to perhaps nail down his third.