Hamlin Finishes Season with 22nd Top-10 Finish to Tie for Career-Best
Denny Hamlin finished ninth in the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, driving the #11 FedEx Express Toyota to his 22nd top-10 finish of the season – tied for a career-best -- as Martin Truex Jr. captured the Series Championship.
Hamlin edged out Truex Jr. for the pole during Friday’s night’s qualifying session, and he led the field to the green flag to begin Sunday’s 267-lap Championship event.
Hamlin spent the majority of the 400.5-mile race within the top-10, ultimately lining up sixth for the final restart with only 34 laps remaining. With the Championship battle intensifying at the front of the field in the closing laps, Hamlin’s efforts to regain his track position were thwarted, and he crossed the start-finish line in ninth behind teammate Matt Kenseth as the checkered-flag flew.
“While it may not be the ending we ultimately wanted, I can’t say enough about the great year our FedEx team had,” said Hamlin. “Our stats show how well be performed, and we’ll use what we learned this year to improve ourselves next season.”
Hamlin finished sixth in the final 2017 standings and recorded two wins, two poles and tied his career-best of 15 top-five and 22 top-10 finishes in a single season during his 2017 campaign. He has won at least one race in each of his 12 full-time seasons and has collected 31 total career victories in 434 Cup Series starts.
Hamlin’s on-track performance during the 2017 season also resulted in a $100,810 donation to Safe Kids Worldwide, a nonprofit working to protect kids on the road, at home and at play, through the Delivering Laps for FedEx Cares program. Starting with the DAYTONA 500 this season, FedEx made a $111 donation for each lap Hamlin led and an $11,000 donation for each race victory he notched.
Drivers and teams will enjoy the off season before returning to Daytona International Speedway to begin the 2018 season with the DAYTONA 500 on February 18, 2018.