Watkins Glen – Post Race Report
Hamlin, FedEx Racing Finish 19th at Watkins Glen
Denny Hamlin finished 19th in Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International, avoiding a pair of late race wrecks to score a top-20 finish in the 90-lap event won by Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch.
Hamlin started 20th in the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota and was unable to make up ground in the early going, battling a loose race car throughout the 2.45-mile, 11-turn road course. Crew chief Darian Grubb brought Hamlin to pit road for changes during the race's second caution, and then again on Lap 31 for fuel only to get inside the team's window for just one more stop.
The second half of the race was caution-filled, and Hamlin used the opportunity to come to pit road for fresh tires and chassis changes. While the majority of lead-lap cars stayed out, Hamlin was able to make it up to 19th for the checkered flag.
"We just struggled passing people today," said Hamlin, after the race. "I would get alongside someone coming out of the last turn, but just couldn't make up ground on the front straightaway. All in all, we had a clean day, something that has tough over the last few weeks, but it's something we can build on."
Busch led the final 29 laps en route to victory lane, followed by Brad Keselowski, Martin Truex Jr., Carl Edwards and Juan Pablo Montoya.
The Series returns to action at Michigan International Speedway on Sunday, Aug. 18.