Seems like everybody wants a piece of Ross Chastain these days.
The Trackhouse Racing driver has turned heads over the past couple of years for his aggressive driving style, which earned him two wins and a second place finish in the final standings last year, but has also made him plenty of enemies along the way.
There was his well-publicized feud with Denny Hamlin last year after the two went back and forth during the race in St. Louis, and even the mild-mannered Aric Almirola had some harsh words for Chastain after a run-in last summer at Atlanta:
A couple weeks ago at Talladega, an aggressive move by Chastain sent Noah Gragson spinning, settling off a wreck that ended up taking out several drivers, including massive hits for Kyle Larson and Ryan Preece.
Then last week at Dover, Chastain was running 4th when he got into the slower car of Brennan Poole, who had just been put a lap down to the leaders. The bump from Chastain sent the #15 of Poole spinning down the track before sliding back up and directly into the path of an oncoming Larson, who had one of the fastest cars of the race.
Larson had some harsh words for Chastain on the radio after the wreck, calling him a “f*cking idiot” for pulling a move like that and being so aggressive in just the first stage of the race.
“I felt like I just got ran over for no reason 80 laps into the race. Doesn’t make any sense to me but I guess that’s something he’s been known to do here recently. Probably needs to get his butt whooped.”
Even Alex Bowman, who’s out for 3-4 weeks following a fractured vertebra suffered during a sprint car crash last week, weighed in on Chastain’s move on Twitter:
Well if you thought Chastain would come into Kansas this week and try to lay low to take some of the heat off of himself, you definitely don’t know Ross Chastain.
Early in the race, Chastain and Kyle Busch tangled on the track and Busch expressed his displeasure with Chastain:
Then after the race, tempers flared between Chastain and Gragson on pit road. The two were having a heated conversation when Gragson grabbed Chastain by the firesuit and began pushing him – which apparently didn’t sit well with Chastain, who threw a haymaker that landed right on Gragson’s jaw.
According to Chastain, Gragson was upset because the two were racing and Chastain got tight coming off the corner, pushing Noah into the outside wall.
“I got tight off of [turn] four, for sure. And Noah and I have a very similar attitude on the racetrack…
I definitely crowded him up off of [turn] four, and he took a swipe at us in [turn] three, and then came down and grabbed ahold of me.
A very big man once told me we have a no-push policy here at Trackhouse.”
As for Gragson, he said he’s sick of getting wrecked by Chastain – and nobody else doing anything about it:
“I just got fenced by the #1. He took care of us at Talladega, and we’re Chevrolet teammates and didn’t work with us there, and then fenced us here and I’m just over it.
Nobody else has the balls to at least confront him. If you don’t at least just grab him and do something he’s just going to keep doing it.”
Unfortunately for Noah, it looks like even when somebody does confront Ross, he still comes out on top.