Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin May 28, 2022; Concord, North Carolina, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Kurt Busch (L) walks down pit road with NASCAR Cup Series driver Denny Hamlin (R) during qualifying for the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

NASCAR team owner Joe Gibbs made a pretty big move on Monday as he tries to put his teams in the best position possible to compete in the Cup Series playoffs. Joe Gibbs Racing has decided to swap pit crews for the Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin cars, starting this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway.

Joe Gibbs Racing is swapping the over-the-wall pit crews for Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin starting at Texas,” Bob Pockrass reported Monday.

Hamlin is currently in sixth place in the Cup Series standings while Busch is in 14th place but has already been eliminated from the playoffs. Hamlin remains alive in the second round of the playoffs. Given that Busch’s crew has a slightly better average time on pit stops, it makes sense from a strategic perspective to try and give Hamlin the few extra seconds he might need to get close to the No. 1 spot in the standings.

Gibbs may have learned a lesson from earlier in the season when Christopher Bell and Bubba Wallace switched crews to refresh things. Bell had an average finish of 4.0 in the first round of the playoffs while Wallace won in Kansas.

It makes a lot of sense for JGR to make the move and the NASCAR world seems to agree.

[Bob Pockrass]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to