On Friday (April 8), Brandon Jones bypassed Ty Gibbs during the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Martinsville Speedway, taking home his fifth career victory. Still up for a $100,000 cash bonus, Gibbs continued on with the race when longtime rival Sam Mayer initiated heavy contact and bumped the rear of his vehicle, causing them to get tangled up with another driver. The logjam pushed Gibbs back from second to eighth place in the competition, and he angrily expressed his disappointment by striking Mayer’s car from behind at the end of the race — a move that eventually escalated into a physical fight.
The two opponents stopped on the pit road and exited their cars. Gibbs confronted Mayer, and they both engaged in a heated exchange that ended with Gibbs, who donned a black helmet, throwing blows at a helmet-less Mayer.
“I tried to talk to him and he got all in my face and at that point, we’ve got to start fighting,” Gibbs explained after the altercation. “We got put in a bad position there. The only thing I’m mad about is [Mayer] didn’t have anything. He wasn’t going to get past [third-place finisher A.J. Allmendinger] and I just got hit in the left rear.”
Both racers eventually chalked the fight up to a simple misunderstanding. “Heat of the moment type stuff,” Mayer said, per NBC Sports. “I think it’s more I was just trying to get his attention, and he took it the wrong way, and it just, he just snapped. I mean, that’s what I say just happened. Nothing anything horrible, but it’s just part of the sport.”
While Mayer and Gibbs, who are both white men, seem to have moved on from the situation, Black Twitter is traumatized by the brawl, which many notice has earned less attention and critique despite being worst than Will Smith’s Oscar slap. See some of the reactions below.
— Jaron Mays ✊🏽🇺🇸 (@jaronmays) April 10, 2022
Traumatized beyond repair. This violent assault was felt all around the world. Where are the police when you need them? Is he going to be banned from #NASCAR for 10 years? What if it were Betty White and she hit her head? https://t.co/AIYvGWjCsS
— 𝕭𝖑𝖆𝖈𝖐 & 𝖀𝖓𝖑𝖎𝖒𝖎𝖙𝖊𝖉 😘😘 (@Blu_Alexia_) April 9, 2022
Last night on national tv NASCAR royalty Ty Gibbs beat a driver because he passed him on the track. Today, those that are calling for Will Smith to go to jail are using words like “disagreement and good fight”. Two scales of Justice “White and everyone else” pic.twitter.com/jFVDzn6PTL
— Tennessee Lady (@tnbluedotlady) April 9, 2022
interesting to see the duality of events and outcomes so close together with things like BLM protests / jan 6 riot and the will smith slap / nascar fight . kinda wild seeing people have mass visibility into these differences and choose to fundamentally stay the same imo
— tak △⃒⃘ (@iamtakaris) April 9, 2022
If you think the outrage over the Will Smith slap wasn't racially motivated well……This is Nascar apparently it's okay to fight here and they are rednecks apparently they love violance the same violance that traumatized them a week ago https://t.co/xlfTNLBraO
— Roscoe Diablo (@RoscoeDiablo) April 9, 2022
All y’all that were yelling “assault!” and “arrest him!” two weeks ago are now cheering on a Nascar fight. Y’all only like violence when Y’ALL do it. Lol, y’all expose yourselves every day on this app.
— Academy Award Winner Will Smith stan account (@CheyanneBabeey) April 9, 2022
The NASCAR fight vs will smith slap is like calling a black women angry for standing up for herself but calling a white person passionate when they stand up for themselves. True is we are all humans and more alike than not so cut the shit #banthem
— JayD (@yourstruly_jayd) April 10, 2022
— Bluberry Jam (@Jam2BluberryD) April 10, 2022
FIGHT at Nascar = No News
Black Slap at Oscars = all Nascar Fans wanna Sue Will Smith for TERRIFYING their Kids & Demand his Career be OVER! 🤔
— Daniel Newman (@DanielNewman) April 10, 2022
— Charles Warren (@CharlesWarren_) April 9, 2022
nascar fights have broken out many times and yet never condoned, but will smith slaps someone ONCE and the entire white population acts like he murdered someone.
— Marz (@mcertain16) April 10, 2022
Ty Gibbs and Sam Mayer had an actual fist fight on the pit road after the NASCAR Xfinity Series race … but y’all out here acting like Will Smith is the devil? 🥴
— Bryan Leyva, MD⚕️ (@DrBryanLeyva) April 9, 2022
— Unfocused & Unbothered (@ADHD_Baddie) April 9, 2022