Charlotte, N.C. — Tony Stewart avoided a costly suspension Wednesday when NASCAR fined him $10,000 and extended his probation through the end of the season for separate blowups with a Winston Cup official and a reporter following the Pepsi 400.
Stewart, who was already on probation through August for spinning out Jeff Gordon on pit road earlier this season, could have received a stiffer punishment ranging from suspension from races to a loss of championship points.
Instead, NASCAR said Wednesday that Stewart would be subjected to those punishments should he violate his probation again this season.
Stewart, who attended his grandfather's funeral in Lafayette, Ind., on Tuesday, was not immediately available for comment.
In its ruling, NASCAR called Stewart's post-race behavior "detrimental to stock car racing" and ordered him to formally apologize to reporter Mike Mulhern of the Winston-Salem (N.C.) Journal and racing fans.