FedEx Racing Team Finishes 19th in Las Vegas
Denny Hamlin finished 19th in Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, battling a tight #11 FedEx Office Toyota throughout the 267-lap event won by Brad Keselowski.
Hamlin lined up 14th for the final restart, but drivers with fresher tires were able to overtake Hamlin by the finish, as the ill-handling #11 machine struggled to turn through the center of the corner.
"Just couldn't get the car to turn," said Hamlin, following the race. "The more we changed on the car to try to free up the center, it just made it way too loose on corner entry. We'll continue to work hard to get our intermediate program where it needs to be, and I'm confident we can do that."
Hamlin started ninth and stayed among the top-20 throughout the 400-mile race on a blustery day in the desert. The race was delayed at the start due to rain, and high winds played a factor in the handling and visibility of the drivers.
Crew Chief Mike Wheeler elected for two tires on the team's first stop on Lap 30, and Hamlin inherited the lead -- and led 10 laps -- before slipping back in the running order.
A host of changes during stops tried to bring the car to life, but all proved futile at the end. The finish dropped Hamlin four spots to eighth in the NASCAR standings following Las Vegas.
The Series returns to action next Sunday, March 13 at Phoenix International Raceway.