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Auto racing: IRL teams receive fines, probation for fight

Associated Press The Spokesman-Review

Tony Kanaan and Sam Hornish Jr. have been fined unspecified amounts and placed on probation for the rest of the year for their roles in a fight at Watkins Glen, N.Y., the Indy Racing League announced Tuesday.

Kanaan’s team, Andretti Green Racing, and Hornish’s team, Team Penske, were fined $25,000 each for unsportsmanlike conduct on pit road as the cars returned after the checkered flag. The teams are on probation until Dec. 31.

The altercation at the Watkins Glen Grand Prix broke out when the drivers exited their cars. Hornish’s father pushed Kanaan, then was knocked to the ground by members of Kanaan’s crew.

Sam Hornish Sr. has been suspended from pit lane for one race and was also placed on probation until Dec. 31, the IRL said. Anthony Fedele has had his league-issued hard card, which was granted through Andretti Green Racing, and credential request opportunities suspended indefinitely.

Chairman Michael Andretti said the team regretted the incident.

“Racing is an emotional sport and it is unfortunate that those emotions carried into the postrace activities on Sunday,” Andretti said in the statement. “We are looking forward to putting this incident behind us and are focused on battling for the IndyCar Series championship throughout the remaining seven races.”

Unser will plead no contest

Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser Jr. will plead no contest to a driving under the influence charge stemming from a January crash on a Nevada freeway, officials said.

Lesser charges, including misdemeanor hit-and-run, failure to render aid in an accident and failure to report an accident, will be dropped, according to the plea deal.

NASCAR driver out of jail

NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver Aaron Fike and his fiancee were released after spending the weekend in jail on drug charges, Fike’s attorney said.

Fike and Cassandra Davidson, both of Cornelius, N.C., were arrested Saturday in the parking lot of Kings Island amusement park north of Cincinnati after security officers observed suspicious activity in Fike’s sport utility vehicle and found syringes and a brown substance believed to be heroin, police said.

Both were charged with drug abuse, a felony, and possession of drug paraphernalia, a misdemeanor. They had their initial court appearance in Mason (Ohio) Municipal Court before Chief Magistrate Eddie Lawson.

Fike drives the No. 1 Toyota Tundra for Red Horse Racing in the Craftsman Truck Series and is ranked eighth in the point standings this week.

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