(Yes, you read that right, NASCAR fight odds.)
Last weekend, Brad Keselowski went haywire after the Bank of America 500. After some hard racing on the track (including under caution) between Keselowski, Matt Kenseth, and Denny Hamlin, “Kes” intentionally rammed into both Hamlin and Kenseth after the race. Understandably, Hamlin and Kenseth took exception and vehicular assault turned into the hand-to-hand variety.
The fracas started when Hamlin tried to go after Kes in the garage. Hamlin was restrained, but his teammate, Kenseth, finished the job, tackling Keselowski between two team trucks.
The racers had to be pulled apart by their crews.
Given last week’s festivities, we take a look at some odds for future NASCAR mayhem.
Odds Brad Keselowski gets into another fight with Denny Hamlin or Matt Kenseth before the end of the Sprint Cup Chase – 100/1
- Explainer: Keselowski had over 200 NASCAR races under his belt before Saturday, and the post-race fisticuffs were his first as a NASCAR pro. Kes was fined and is lucky the punishment wasn’t more severe. He should be on his best behavior for the rest of the season. That said, it’s possible that Kenseth or Hamlin still want a piece of him. They got off scot-free and may not fear the consequences as much as Keselowski.
Odds two other drivers get into a post-race fight before the end of the current Sprint Cup Chase – 5/1
- Explainer: The Chase is structured to create drama, suspense, and, more importantly, recklessness. With more drivers being eliminated week by week, the ones near the cutoff line will throw caution to the wind for the chance to drive another day. As a result, we are apt to see more car-to-car contact on the track and, in turn, more hand-to-face contact in the garage. While NASCAR fights are still a rarity, all things considered, the Chase is the perfect breeding ground for the necessary malice. And, after Keselowski’s $50,000 slap on the wrist, fear of the consequences likely won’t be much of a deterrent for first time offenders.
If there is another post-race fight before the end of the season, who is the most likely combatant (other than Keselowski, Hamlin, and Kenseth)?
- Jeff Gordon – 5/1
- Explainer: Gordon has fought on the track before and, in the wake of last week’s altercation, said that he thought the fans and the media loved it; he also excused the conduct of those involved, saying that drivers can become overwhelmed by emotion. Those sound like the words of someone ready and willing for a scrap.
- Dale Earnhardt Jr. – 10/1
- Explainer: Junior doesn’t have the same scrappy history as Gordon, but he did say that he thought the attention garnered by the fight was good for the sport. Earnhardt Jr. may also feel that he has something to prove physically. After being turned by Kyle Busch in a 2008 race, some of Earnhardt Jr.’s fans were disappointed he didn’t respond with more, let’s say, vigor. If he’s in another on-track incident, he may respond differently this time.