NASCAR announced Thursday that it will make public all fines for disciplinary action. Although some fines had been made public along with penalty announcements, the stock car sanctioning body had kept some fines private but will now follow the more common policy among major sports organizations and announce all such actions publicly. The move follows controversy about the "secret" $25,000 fine given Brad Keselowski last year following his comments posted on Twitter that were critical of NASCAR's move to electronic fuel-injection systems.
"NASCAR will no longer issue fines that are undisclosed," read the statement announcing the decision. "We looked at this issue from every angle and gathered feedback from the industry. While there are always sensitivities related to sponsor relationships and other leagues may continue issuing disclosed and undisclosed fines, NASCAR has decided that all fines moving forward will be made public after the competitor or organization that has been penalized has been informed."
The decision was widely endorsed by the drivers.
"I think it's going to make it much clearer," Kevin Harvick told NASCAR.com. "You look at the NFL, you look at Major League Baseball, the NBA, and really these fines have been no different than what you see players and coaches getting fined for in those leagues. It's just something that's going to be open now, and you just have to, not watch what you say, but don't be a jerk about it toward the sanctioning body. The door is always open for you to go in there and talk to them and try to work through it. I think it's great that it's going public, and I think it will make it clearer, myself."
"I think public is the way to go," Jeff Burton agreed. "I mean, if I'm going to get fined for something, I'd just assume everybody know about it. Every other sport does it, and they don't have major backlash from it. If you have a problem, you can go to [NASCAR] and talk to them. They may not side with you, but they will listen to you. Because of that open-door policy, I have no problem with the [public] fine at all."