Bubba Wallace and Kyle Larson were involved in a heated confrontation at Las Vegas Motor Speedway during Sunday's South Point 400, with Wallace losing his temper after Larson ran him into the wall leading to Wallace wrecking Larson. The two then got into a shoving match in the infield.
Coming off Turn 4, Larson ran Wallace up the track and into the wall, a move Wallace responded to by hooking a left into Larson's right rear fender, crashing them both as well as playoff contender Christopher Bell.
Still not satisfied, Wallace walked toward Larson's car as Larson climbed out in the infield, confronting him and shoving him several times while Larson tried to walk away. The situation was eventually de-escalated by NASCAR officials.
Wallace insisted afterward that he did not intentionally crash Larson, suggesting that his steering was broken after he got put in the wall. However, he made clear exactly what his intended message to Larson was.
"Larson wanted to make a three-wide divebomb. Never cleared me, and I don't lift," Wallace told NBC Sports. "I know I'm kind of new to running at the front, but I don't lift. I wasn't even in a spot to lift and he never lifted either, and now we're junk. Just piss-poor move on his execution.
"He knows that what he did was wrong. He wanted to question what I was doing. He never cleared me."
Larson acknowledged that he made an aggressive move on Wallace going into Turn 3, and he also expected Wallace to retaliate. However, he noted that it was foolish of Wallace to react in the way that he did.
Larson also suggested it was unwise of Wallace to intentionally wreck him in that manner given recent sensitivities over injuries in NASCAR, but he did make a point that plenty of other drivers have retaliated before.
"He had a reason to be mad, but his race wasn't over until he retaliated," Larson told NBC Sports. "It is what it is. ... I think with everything that's been going on here lately with head injuries and all that, fractured ligaments and all that, I don't think it's probably the right thing to do.
"But hey, we've all done it -- maybe not all of us, but I have, I've let the emotions get the best of me before too. I know he's probably still upset, but I'm sure with everything going on he'll know that he made a mistake in the retaliation part. And I'm sure he'll think twice about it next time."
Wallace's anger stemmed from him having a very good race car, as he took the lead late in Stage 1 and took the stage win before falling back through the top five on the Stage 2 restart. However, Wallace's actions affected far more than just him. The crash also caused terminal damage to Christopher Bell's car, putting one of the Round of 8 contenders out of the race and in a deep points hole as he tries to advance to the Championship 4.