Terry Labonte was talking about retribution, NASCAR was talking about reviewing its rough-driving penalties and Dale Earnhardt was talking about reverting to his renegade ways.

Once again, Bristol Motor Speedway lived up to its reputation for putting on some of the best shows in Winston Cup racing.

The 500-lap races on the .533-mile oval have become famous for producing plenty of crumpled fenders and bruised egos, and Saturday night's running of the Goody's 500 was no exception.

Earnhardt won the race by knocking Labonte out of the lead with a bump from behind less than a lap from the checkered flag.

While Labonte and the sanctioning body were left to debate the relative merits of racing to win, intimidator style, Earnhardt called it just another Saturday night short-track show.

"What can I say about Bristol?" he said with a shrug. "It's still a cantankerous, exciting, aggressive, anything-you-want-to-call-it race track."

Because of its narrow, concrete layout and its 36-degree banked turns, Bristol produces plenty of speed and banging. It's a style that fit Earnhardt well earlier in his career, but lately, he hasn't been fast enough on a consistent basis to be able to aggressively challenge for the lead on short tracks.

That wasn't the case Saturday night, and Earnhardt, 48, showed he still has the moves that helped him win seven Winston Cup titles.

After the race, Labonte warned that Earnhardt "better tighten his belts up," and NASCAR officials were left to ponder how to make judgment calls on the issue of aggressive driving.

Regarding Earnhardt's pass, which sent Labonte spinning into a concrete wall and left him with an eighth-place finish, NASCAR said replays appeared to suggest it was contact typical of Bristol.

"Only one person knows the full extent of that situation," NASCAR operations director Kevin Triplett said. "Beyond that, it was contact in a night of contact. But we may have to step back and look at the whole picture."

Earnhardt, long held as an icon by legions of racing fans, was showered with boos by many in the record crowd of about 140,000 as he took the checkered flag. The noise grew even louder as he drove into Victory Lane, and it persisted while he and his team celebrated his 73rd career triumph.

"Was I not supposed to try to pass him back?" Earnhardt asked. "If it comes down to the last lap and you're going for it and you get into somebody, you get into them. You don't mean to, but you mean to race him."

CAPTION: Dale Earnhardt, left, passed Terry Labonte en route to winning Goody's 500 Saturday. Earnhardt bumped and spun Labonte to take lead on final lap.