Suarez confronted McDowell after they were both eliminated in the first round of qualifying for the TicketGuardian 500, at one point throwing him to the ground.
Suarez believes that there was a lack of respect from McDowell. Crew members finally pulled the two apart.
"Just miscommunication on the track", said McDowell, an Arizona native racing at his home track.
Just about everybody waited until the last couple minutes of the 10-minute qualifying session before exiting pit road, creating chaos on the mile-long track.
Suarez accused his foe of lacking respect after a string of near-misses. The two grabbed each other with Suarez shoving McDowell to the ground.
"Everybody in the garage knows the second lap is the good one, you have to try to get out of the way if somebody is coming on their lap, he didn't". "I was opening my second lap and he was in my way in Corner 1 and 2". When he came over I wasn't that excited about him trying to crash us on the race track. I thought he was going to get out of the way in the second corner, and he didn't, and I nearly wrecked him. It's racing. Short practice sessions, shorter qualifying, getting late going through tech, the intensity ramps up.
McDowell told reporters that he and Suarez don't have a history of issues, and chalked up the incident to the heat of the moment.
McDowell is scheduled to start 27th on Sunday, with Suarez slated to start alongside him in 28th.
"It was kind of chaotic out there", McDowell said.