Spencer Vs. Busch

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BROOKLYN, MICH. - Veteran Jimmy Spencer and young gun Kurt Busch renewed their feud Sunday in the garage area at Michigan International Speedway after the NASCAR Winston Cup GFS Marketplace 400 event.

Busch ran out of fuel in front of Spencer's transporter as he attempted to drive back to his hauler. Reportedly, Spencer rammed Busch from behind, got out of the car and reached through the window to punch him in the nose.

Busch managed to get out of his car and yelled at Spencer before going to the NASCAR officials' trailer. No other punches were thrown.

"I want Spencer here right now," Busch's crew chief, Jimmy Fennig, said. "We're going to have a fight here."

Officials brought Spencer and his crew chief, Tommy Baldwin, to the trailer, where a closed-door session was conducted. It included Busch, Fennig, car owner Jack Roush and NASCAR president Mike Helton.

Busch was the first to leave the trailer. His only comment on whether Spencer hit him was, "Ask Jimmy Spencer."

Spencer rushed through reporters with a big cigar in his mouth without a comment.

The feud between the two began in April, when Busch bumped Spencer out of the lead at California Speedway and went on to claim his first of three wins this season. Busch said the bump was a bit of a payback from Phoenix last November.

At Indianapolis in August, Spencer hit Busch, which he said was unintentional. Busch called Spencer a "decrepit old has-been."

Roush said Spencer broke Busch's nose, although the youngster was not bleeding when he entered the trailer.

"Jimmy ran into him and then came up and punched him through the window," Roush said. "There were words exchanged. I don't know what was said."

"NASCAR spoke with both drivers about the incident that occurred today," NASCAR spokesman Mike Zizzo said. "If we should take any actions, we'll announce it at an appropriate time."

NASCAR is not the only organization investigating the situation.

Jeff Patterson, spokesman for the Lenawee County Sheriff's Department, confirmed that Spencer is being investigated for possible assault.

"There is an ongoing investigation into the alleged assault," Patterson said. "It will be investigated thoroughly. We've already spoken with both parties and we'll submit it to the prosecutor."

Apparently, Sunday's incident stemmed from contact on the straightaway during the race. Spencer's transport driver, Jeff Miles, said, "I know he tried to put Jimmy in the fence on the straightaway."

But Fennig saw it as a race incident.

"They rubbed one time down the straightaway, but everybody rubs," he said.

Fellow driver Robby Gordon reacted to the scuffle by bluntly saying, "I'm going to pay Jimmy's fine. He's (Busch) had it coming for a while."


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