Now that it appears to have put the issue of the protests over the controversial finish to the New Hampshire race behind it, IndyCar has moved to tackle the other lingering issue from that weekend – the matter of Will Power's "two-handed salute" to IndyCar officials that was caught on ABC's live telecast of the race, after bolting from his crashed car following the aborted final restart.
IndyCar announced Thursday that it has fined the Australian driver $30,000 and placed him on probation for the remainder of the season for his actions. However, Power will be able to work off the fine by making a series of public appearances on behalf of IndyCar throughout the remainder of the season.
"While the circumstances around the checkered flag were highly unusual, they do not justify this type of behavior, especially in a family-friendly environment," said IndyCar president of competition and chief steward Brian Barnhart. "Emotions always are on display in our sport and we know these actions are not indicative of Will's normal behavior."
Power had the option of contesting the penalty, but such a protest/appeal may result in an increase to the penalty, IndyCar warned. However, in a statement subsequently released through his team, Power indicated that he would accept IndyCar's judgment and move on.
"I understand that the series has to make a reasonable effort to ensure that this type of behavior will not be repeated by anyone else in the future," Power said in the statement. "I have expressed my feelings about the incident that prompted my poor behavior, and I've apologized and continue to regret the inappropriate gesture I made as well."
Team Penske boss Tim Cindric said that the team did not condone Power's actions, but added, "Clearly, Will, like many of the drivers in the field, was very frustrated with the decision that was made by race control to restart the race under dangerous conditions and he let his emotions get the best of him."