Corey LaJoie walks onstage during driver intros prior to the 2023 Würth 400 at Dover International Speedway ; Ross Chastain looks on prior to the running of the 2023 Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway
James Gilbert/Getty Images ; Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire via Getty Image

Corey LaJoie Defends Ross Chastain: "Let the Big Dog Keep Eating"

Given the amount of on-track controversy that Ross Chastain has generated on an almost weekly basis, the Trackhouse Racing driver has been a hot topic on pretty much every NASCAR podcast.

Corey LaJoie, who drives the No. 7 Chevrolet for Spire Motorsports, was the latest big name to give his two cents on the Chastain situation when he defended the former watermelon farmer on his Stacking Pennies podcast.

"I'm on Ross' side," LaJoie said. "I think you have to let the big dog keep eating."

Ryan Flores, LaJoie's co-host, chimed in that Trackhouse Racing co-owner Justin Marks would probably disagree with LaJoie's assessment, given that Marks recently said Chastain needs to tone down his aggressiveness. Clearly, Marks' comments were inspired by Rick Hendrick's criticism of Chastain, as the GM Tech Center — an important place for every Chevy driver in the Cup Series — is on Hendrick Motorsports property.

Speaking of Hendrick, Flores made sure to point out the double standard when it comes to aggressive drivers by mentioning a driver with a similar style: Kyle Larson.

"Kyle Larson is as aggressive and puts people in as bad spots as Ross Chastain does — he's just not as brash," Flores said.

LaJoie added, "Larson gets the benefit of the doubt a lot because of how successful and how fast and how, generally speaking, how impressive he is. I think to your point, Kyle Larson has made a living, a damn good one, by putting people in equally as compromising positions as Ross did to Kyle on Sunday."

The Chastain-Larson incident would likely be viewed as nothing more than a typical racing occurrence if it weren't for what happened a few weeks back at Dover, when Ross hooked Brennan Poole into the wall and caught up Larson's No.5 in that crash.

Both Ross and Kyle clearly have some things they need to work out — and if Larson feels that he owes Chastain a few retaliation hits, then it is what it is. Both drivers are competing for the Cup championship, and this isn't likely the last time the two will have a run-in. As far as that is concerned, Chastain is going to do what he does, just as Larson will.

MORE: Kyle Petty Compares Ross Chastain to Some of NASCAR's Greatest Legends in Defense of Polarizing Driver