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NHRA fines Top Fuel driver Bob Vandergriff Jr. $20,000

May 23, 2014, 4:42 PM EDT

(Photo courtesy (Photo courtesy

When you hear of fines and penalties in motorsports, they’re typically in NASCAR.

But not this one.

In one of the larger penalties the sport has seen in recent years, the National Hot Rod Association has fined veteran Top Fuel driver Bob Vandergriff Jr. $20,000 for what a media release termed “violations of the NHRA Rulebook during last weekend’s Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.”

According to a statement by the NHRA, Vandergriff “was fined for abandoning his race car on the track, remaining and walking on an active race track after exiting his race car, and for initiating a verbal confrontation with three NHRA officials.”

According to, Vandergriff was upset at track conditions at Atlanta Dragway following a nearly day-long rain. When he attempted to make his first qualifying effort, Vandergriff nearly crashed while racing Clay Millican last Friday. Vandergriff reportedly left his dragster in the shutdown lanes at the end of the track, walked back the length of the track to confront several NHRA officials, including the sanctioning body’s vice president of competition, Graham Light, about the track conditions.

Vandergriff was fined for violation of 1.3.1 regarding participant conduct, found on page 3 of the 2014 NHRA Rulebook.  The fine is appealable as outlined in section 1, pages 17-24 of the 2014 NHRA Rulebook.

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  1. wallio - May 23, 2014 at 5:36 PM

    Yea, they generally get mad when you go after the starter, no matter how much he deserves it. I was once escorted off the property of Island Dragway by two NJ State Troopers once, for doing pretty much what BV did here.

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