Denny Hamlin Mar 11, 2023; Avondale, Arizona, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Denny Hamlin (11) during qualifying for the United Rentals Work United 500 at Phoenix Raceway. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Denny Hamlin got off with less of a penalty than what Hendrick Motorsports and Kaulig Racing got, but he still received a sizable penalty off the heels of the Phoenix Cup Series race.

NASCAR announced that they fined Hamlin $50,000 and 25 driver points due to intentional contact with Ross Chastain on the final laps of the race.

The sanctioning body determined that Hamlin violated sections of the rulebook pertaining to “attempting to manipulate the outcome” by taking out another car and “actions NASCAR finds to be detrimental to stock car racing.” Ironically, “Actions Detrimental” is the name of Hamlin’s podcast.

It was on this podcast that Hamlin revealed that he intentionally got into Chastain in the closing laps. Hamlin also said on the podcast that he and Chastain talked after the race and called a truce, but if he hadn’t been this honest, he probably wouldn’t have been penalized. Because he did, he’s out 25 points and $50,000.

It’s that bit that has rubbed people the wrong way. Yes, Hamlin and Chastain have history, but it was a seemingly innocuous incident. It wasn’t like last year when Bubba Wallace turned Kyle Larson into the wall at a high-speed track. And, let’s be honest here if Hamlin wasn’t honest, we’re not talking about this.

Either way, it’s got the NASCAR world talking.


About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them.

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