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09/01 2015

Spencer Massey fired by NHRA team for policy violation

Spencer Massey was fired Friday by DonSchumacher Racing for an undisclosed violation of team policy, the team said.

The move is effective immediately, the release said. There was no indication of a replacement in the DSR Top Fuel dragster for the remainder of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.

“Spencer is no longer with DSR,” team owner Don Schumacher said in the release. “He violated a DSR policy and would not correct the violation. I feel badly for members of the team because they will not be able to compete for a world championship or next weekend’s Traxxas Shootout title.”

Massey was 10th in the Top Fuel standings heading into the Chevrolet PerformanceU.S. Nationals Sept. 2-7 at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis. He had won 21 events in his career.

In 2013, Massey apologized for an alcohol-induced tirade directed at teammate Antron Brown during the awards banquet at the end of the 2012 season.

Massey, who had just lost the championship to Brown in the season finale at Pomona,Calif., directed his comments at Brown during the banquet in Hollywood.

In February 2013, he apologized and said he was receiving counseling.

“I’m in counseling for temper and anger management and trying to learn to handle myself better in public situations,” Massey told USA TODAY Sports at the time. “It’s something I wanted to do after this happened. If something in the race car makes you angry, you need to figure out a better way to handle it. If this can help me deal with public situations, then I think it will make me a better person.”

The team said it would have no further comment.

After the U.S. Nationals, the Countdown to the Championship — NHRA’s six-race playoff format — begins Sept. 18 at zMax Dragway in Charlotte. Only the top 10 drivers in each category make it into the Countdown.