NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin and Toyota issue statement
Last weekend, NASCAR raced at Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama. The race ended in a crash as Kyle Larson made an aggressive move in an attempt to win the race.
On Tuesday, the sanction noted that NASCAR Cup Series driver Denny Hamlin will be required to take sensitivity training. The mandate follows a social media post that the driver and team-owner made.
According to the NASCAR release, the process must begin before the end of the week.
The social media post in question was made on Monday afternoon following the race at Talladega Superspeedway. Hamlin’s post was aimed at Kyle Larson whose last-lap move caused a wreck that collected Kurt Busch and Bubba Wallace, both 23XI Racing machines. Hamlin is the co-owner of 23XI Racing.
“I don’t know if I can take many more fucking hits like that,” Wallace stated over the team radio as he broken car coasted to a stop following the impact with the wall.
“Not clear,” NASCAR team owner Hamlin reacted to in-car video from Wallace and Busch.
What did Denny Hamlin do?
The post that NASCAR reacted to was a meme clip from the Family Guy tv series as a character drove through traffic. With an Asian accent the character stated, “How much signal I need to cut across 8 lanes? None? I turn now. Good luck everybody else.”
Hamlin played the replay of Larson’s last lap move as the audio from Family Guy played over it. Larson is of Japanese descent.
Last year, fellow Joe Gibbs Racing driver Kyle Busch used a slur. He was also required to take sensitivity training, which he did before the 2022 season.
Denny Hamlin & Toyota issue statements
After the post, Hamlin deleted it and issued a statement late Monday night:
“I took down a post I made earlier today after reading some of the comments. It was a poor choice of memes and I saw how it was offensive. It came across totally wrong. I apologize,” Hamlin stated via twitter.
Toyota also issued a statement:
“We have spoken with Denny Hamlin regarding his tweet from yesterday. Toyota supports NASCAR’s decision to mandate sensitivity training for Denny and we will all move forward together,” the Toyota Racing Development statement read.