Ross Chastain didn't have the opportunity to win the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series championship this past Sunday at Phoenix, but he didn't care as he was solely focused on winning the final race of the season.
So he wasn't concerned about ruffling the feathers of championship contender Ryan Blaney.
It was enough to make Blaney really mad and nearly cost him a shot at the championship, which he eventually won Sunday.
Blaney's frustration with aero-blocking Sunday by both Kyle Larson and Chastain boiled over in his post-race press conference, as he let Chastain have it with a profanity-filed response.
"F—-ing right I hit him on purpose," Blaney said in response to why he had bumped Chastain during the race.
Chastain has proved he would race everyone hard no matter who it is and probably would do it to his own mother.
He didn't hold back in his own post-race press conference, noting he doesn't care that Blaney was mad.
Ross Chastain said he doesn?t care if Ryan Blaney is mad at him. Chastain said he made sure he didn?t make contact with him. Chastain: ?Apparently I was No. 1. I don?t know.? pic.twitter.com/ZBKktn7WZ8
— Bob Pockrass (@bobpockrass) November 6, 2023
"He got by me one time ... was not going to run him up, was not going to pinch him up," Chastain said. "Yeah, I know he's mad, and I don't care. I do not care. I did not care then, I do not care now. I'm here to race him. I'm not going to wreck him. I gave him the bottom-most times. One time I was inside of him after he got by me. I crossed back over into three and I made sure to wrap the bottom. Like, I'm not going to slide up and pinch him at all. It's in my mind the entire time, for sure."
Chastain then talked about how easily Blaney gets angry and that it's just who he is. He said he saw plenty of it in the mirror, likely citing a moment caught on the broadcast that clearly showed Blaney flipping the middle finger at Chastain.
Here's Ryan Blaney flipping off Ross Chastain.
— Always Race Day (@AlwaysRaceDay) November 5, 2023
"Anger. He gets angry. It's OK," Chastain said. "I've known him for a decade. I could see him moving around in the car, and the car's going straight. And I could see his colorful suit and gloves."
It's clear that this is definitely a rivalry to watch for years to come. And, as Chastain said, he doesn't care. It will be exciting to see what the next chapter will hold.
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