Dale Earnhardt Jr. wants upset NASCAR drivers to be able to door slam after a race

The two-time Daytona 500 winner doesn't want to see a heavy handed fine for Bubba Wallace, Chase Elliott

As NASCAR mulls whether to penalize Bubba Wallace and Chase Elliott for post-race door slams on Sunday evening in Downtown Chicago, Dale Earnhardt Jr. pleas that the sanctioning body doesn’t make it too heavy handed.

Wallace drove up to Bowman, as the latter was taking a celebratory lap as the winner and pinched him into the wall in retaliation for an incident that transpired earlier in the race.

Eliott gave Daniel Suarez a door slam after the race too.

NASCAR said it would investigate the matter with Cup Series managing director Elton Sawyer confirming on Tuesday that the topic was on their agenda.

“Yeah, they are, We’ll have discussions this morning in our meeting and get to a good place on that,” Sawyer said. “Nothing to announce at this point but we’ll get our team together and talk about it.”

Earnhardt says that drivers showing displeasure by rubbing fenders after the race is part of the identity of the sport and shouldn’t heavily be discouraged beyond a relatively minimal fine.

“After the race, I’m okay if Bubba goes up there and hits the 48,” Earnhardt Jr. said Tuesday on his Dale Jr. Download podcast. “And I’m okay if somebody goes after Chase or Chase goes after somebody. And if they want to fine them, that’s fine. I don’t care. I don’t think the drivers mind too much. $5, $10, $15 grand.

“Don’t take points away. Don’t truly deter this, because this shit is what racing’s about.”

Earnhardt says the only line drivers shouldn’t cross is intentionally spinning someone out, similar to like what happened under caution last week at Nashville between Carson Hocevar on Harrison Burton.

“Now there is a line,” Earnhardt said. “There is a line where it’s too egregious, too aggressive, too dangerous, and you’ve got to know as a driver where that’s at and not to cross it. But these type of things for me is kind of in our DNA. It’s like the gloves coming off at the hockey match and a couple of guys getting an opportunity to throw a few punches before the refs finally come in and go, ‘All right, enough. The fans have seen enough.’

“That needs to be able to happen,” he said. “Those things like that, drivers need to be able to do those things, right or wrong. I’m not saying they’re right choices. I’m not saying it’s what the driver should do. But the drivers need to be able to have a little bit of a jab or two, some flexibility.”

Earnhardt was prepared for the counterargument of what Carl Edwards did to him at Michigan in 2006, hitting him in the driver side door with his hand out the window, something that resulted in a $20,000 fine.

“Carl’s swipe at me was a t-bone, a really hard hit,” Earnhardt said. “That fine for him was $20,000 and this wasn’t anything like that.”

Because the hand was out the window?

“I don’t think that matters,” Dale said. “I know that’s bad and it looks bad and is scary but my hand being out, that’s my fault for having my hand out the window. What am I doing. I shouldn’t have my hand out for any reason. So I wont let that affect my opinion on this.

“I like the old school approach on this that, man if you piss me off enough, I want to be able to drive up to your car and door you a little bit.”

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