CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Tony Stewart was fined $25,000 and docked
25 points by NASCAR on Tuesday for cursing during his television
interview after his win at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Stewart, who had just scored his second victory in three years
at his hometown race track, was soaking up the adoration from the
throng of orange-clad fans when he dedicated the win to them.
"This one's for every one of those fans in the stands who pull
for me every week and take all the (expletive) from everybody
else,'' he said.
The curse came on ESPN's first Nextel Cup broadcast since 2000.
NASCAR, which called the language inappropriate and said
Stewart's actions were detrimental to stock-car racing, also docked
car owner Joe Gibbs 25 points. It follows a precedent that started
in 2002, when crew chief Chad Knaus was penalized for cursing on
The penalties escalated over the next few seasons, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. was knocked out of the points lead when he was docked
25 points for cursing after his 2004 win at Talladega.
The penalty doesn't hurt Stewart in the standings. He is
currently fifth in the points, and the deduction didn't drop him.
But sixth-place Carl Edwards is now only 17 points away from
him. The top 12 drivers in the standings after the Sept. 8 race in
Richmond make the Chase for the championship.
"Heaven forbid you actually have fun in life.''