By on April 30, 2013


In the 1982 German Grand Prix at the Hockenheim racetrack, driving a BMW powered Brabham Nelson Piquet Sr. was leading 18 laps into the 45 lap race. As he passed backmarker Eliseo Salazar to lap him at the new Ostkurve chicane, Salazar turned into Piquet, wrecking the two of them. It was a relatively low speed collision and neither was injured but both of their races were over. An enraged Piquet was already gesturing angrily at Salazar as he got out of his car. Piquet then pretty much charged at Salazar, stiff armed him, then hit him with a left right combination of punches to the head followed by a karate kick towards Salazar’s groin, which missed. Next time some hoity toity F1 fan mocks NASCAR and the Allison brothers versus Cale Yarborough throwdown, remind them of Piquet’s kick.

Speaking of NASCAR fights and kicking Piquets, a series of events started with some on-track bumpin’ and bangin’  between Nelson Piquet Jr and Brian Scott during the Nationwide Series race this past weekend at Richmond International Racewa, and continued into the cool down lap. It finally ended when two Richard Childress Racing employees were arrested for assault, reportedly on Piquet Jr in his motorhome. That alleged assault was presumably provoked by what Piquet Jr did to Scott on pit road after the race. After the drivers exited their cars, Piquet Jr approached Scott and after some back and forth shoving, Piquet Jr emulated dear old dad and tried to kick Scott in the crotch. Unlike the senior Piquet, though, Junior hit his mark. Scott called it a “chicken move”. On his part, Piquet tweeted an apology to his fans, sponsors and team, and then tried to laugh off the kick with a comment about his allegedly poor soccer skills.

The Piquets are originally from Brazil, where not only soccer is popular but it’s also where mixed martial arts originated. Kicks are standard fare in MMA. Some have compared NASCAR to professional wrestling, specifically WWE. If the Piquet family’s method of brawling catches on in NASCAR, perhaps the  UFC might be a better analogy.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can dig deeper at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS


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12 Comments on “Fathers, Sons, Apples and Trees...”

  • avatar

    Hey Ronnie!

    I once read somewhere that while when Americans fight they drop everything and puch, Brazilians will kick. I think it’s true so if you ever get into a fight with a Brazilian, prepare for a kick. I think it has everything to do with football and not MMA.Football or soccer, is deeply ingrained into every breathing Brazilian’s mind. MMA not nearly as much.

    As to the father and son, apples and trees thing, while the Jr is also a racer, he can’t compare to his old man. Piquer Sr is in my opinion one of the top 10 in the sport in all times. Jr benfits from his name and daddy’s money to give it a go. And that’s about it.

    • 0 avatar

      Piquet was one of my favorites when he was in F1 too. He won championships in a broad variety of cars. He had one of the last wins championships for the old DFV and the first for a turbo, then the first for Honda. He race with and without ground effects, saw the introduction of automated systems, and shared a car with the greatest driver of them all at the end of his career. It is a shame that he was never quite the same driver after his accident at Imola in 1987, but he was smart enough to make the most of what he could still do. He was a character too, and very funny if you weren’t the lady married to Nigel Mansell.

      • 0 avatar

        For me, too. I’m still with Piquet Sr. in that situation. That was a simple, spontaneous reaction. Of course, others wouldn’t have done it this way. How would Senna or Prost have done it?

  • avatar


    You said, “Next time some hoity toity F1 fan mocks NASCAR and the Allison brothers versus Cale Yarborough throwdown, remind them of Piquet’s kick.”

    The difference is that with F1, such displays are the exception; with NASCAR, such displays are unfortunately the norm.

    I’ve long since stopped watching NASCAR races: in addition to these unhappy routine behaviors, why watch a bunch of cars circulate inside a fishbowl? If NASCAR were largely road courses with real cars, then things would be much different…


    • 0 avatar

      “If NASCAR were largely road courses with real cars, then things would be much different…”

      This thought has come to my mind recently. Then I remembered they call it Austrailian V8 supercars. This is what NASCAR would be if they had “real” cars and moastly road courses.

    • 0 avatar

      Formula 1 drivers take out their elitist frustrations on lowly course workers instead of each other. It is all much more civilized.

  • avatar

    Was a big fan of Nascar when you could buy what you watched. I suppose Richard Petty was still active the last time I was interested.

    It probably doesn’t happen often anymore but a privateer can still win a motorcycle event. I was a big fan when Jalopies with engines 1948 or older were running. Today I don’t watch much any of them but when I do it probably has two wheels.

  • avatar

    I watched the Richmond race last Saturday night and it was actually pretty good. I thought Montoya had it and he did till that caution with 12 to go came out, man, seen that too many times! The things that piss me off about Nascar could be summarized in two words, France family, get rid of that tyrant and burn the rule book, oh forgot, they make it up along the way. Get the cars into the present century and eliminate all but, length, width, height and weight as the specs. Some are saying that will only benefit the big guys, hogwash! The reason it’s so expensive now is that the teams are spending thousands for a few secounds faster. Like Earnhardt said, let those that can drive – drive.

    • 0 avatar

      Montoya had it in the bag. Harvick had used up his tires running him down and wasn’t going to be able to pass. Restarting in the upper lane meant that Montoya didn’t have much chance to recover in a two lap shoot out. Harvick made a brilliant move to win though.

  • avatar

    Gotta love Murray Walker.

    My favorite quote:

    “And now, excuse me while I interrupt myself.”

  • avatar
    John B

    You call that a fight? They would be laughed out of any NHL rink.

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