NASCAR says they were forced to step in given Denny Hamlin admitted it on his podcast
NASCAR has just released their weekly penalty report following Phoenix Raceway. The report included the largest penalty to a single team in NASCAR history as Hendrick Motorsports was fined $400,000 alone. However, another penalty was issued to Denny Hamlin.
Phoenix Raceway penalty report; 7 crew members suspended; Biggest penalty to one team in NASCAR history
Denny Hamlin and Ross Chastain have a long history. The two drivers were involved in several incidents last season.
And that feud had more fuel added in the opening race of the 2023 season. Ross Chastain got into Hamlin once more.
Last weekend, in the final laps of Phoenix Raceway, Hamlin restarted the race with just two tires. A full line of cars with four fresh tires lined up behind him.
As Hamlin entered turn one, he realized the cars with four tires were about to blow right by him. And with Ross Chastain on his outside Hamlin said, “You’re coming with me.”
Hamlin opened up the wheel, ran up the track and stuffed Chastain in the fence. The two drivers exited turn two nose to tail. As they went down the backstretch, Chastain brake checked Hamlin but the No. 11 car didn’t lift.
When they went into turn three, Hamlin drove into the bumper of Chastain once more, shoving him up the track and taking the position away.
Both drivers restarted in the top 10. However, following the contact they both dropped outside the top-20.
On Monday, Denny Hamlin went on his ‘Actions Detrimental’ podcast and told the unfiltered story. The honesty gave NASCAR all the information they needed to issue a penalty.
Denny Hamlin admits retaliation on Ross Chastain at Phoenix (Video)
NASCAR penalizes Denny Hamlin for crashing Ross Chastain in retaliation
Sections 4.4 : Member code of conduct.
4.4.B : Attempting to manipulate the outcome of the race or championship and wrecking or spinning another vehicle, whether or not that vehicle is removed from competition as a result.
4.4.D : Actions NASCAR finds to be detrimental to stock racing or NASCAR.
Penalty : NASCAR has issued a fine of $50,000 to Denny Hamlin. He’s also been docked 25 driver points.
Now, we know why Hamlin called his podcast ‘Actions Detrimental’.
NASCAR issues $550,000 in fines after Phoenix Raceway
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“We would have viewed this one as a racing incident,” Elton Sawyer told Bob Pockrass.
“Then, 24 hours later, have a competitor that has gone on a podcast. I’ll say, we’re delighted that Denny has a podcast.”
“But, when you start admitting that you have intentionally done something that would compromise the results of the end of the race, that rises to a level that we’re going to get involved.”
“There’s no other way to look at that. We’ve been consistent in the past with that.”
“The highest level of motorsports in North America, sending the message that it’s ok to tell somebody that, ‘I’m going to wreck you.’ And then do that. That’s not the message that we need to be sending to anybody. For sure, we don’t need to be sending that to young drivers that are starting out at lower levels.”
NASCAR penalty system updated with possible $500k fine
Phoenix Race Results: March 12, 2023 (NASCAR Cup Series)