Denny Hamlin went against his boss Joe Gibbs to appeal against the penalty decision

Denny Hamlin went against his boss Joe Gibbs to appeal against the penalty decision

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Denny Hamlin has been in the midst of some controversy since the NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix Raceway.

The Joe Gibbs Racing’s No. 11 driver surprisingly and even boldly claimed that he intentionally clashed with Ross Chastain at this race. In light of this situation, he was fined $50,000 and docked 25 points by NASCAR.

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After initially not deciding to appeal, Hamlin decided that he would do so by citing that what happened was “common hard racing that happens each and every weekend. There was also no manipulation of the race nor actions detrimental to the sport.”

However, not everyone in the JGR team supported Hamlin’s decision to appeal. In fact, the owner Joe Gibbs even said to him to let the decision be.

“I initially was not going to appeal this because my owner, Joe Gibbs, whom I love like family because we are family, called me and says, ‘Hey, this is obviously not ideal, but I’ve talked to sponsors, I talked to the team, we just want to let this go. We just want to move on. Everyone’s fine, but let’s just not drag it out and move on.

“I was like, fine. It’s not what I like, but I’ll do it because Dad’s telling me so, and I need to be a good teammate and someone that respects when my team owner asks me to do something.”

Hamlin was even convinced to not act on it any further. However, an email from NASCAR changed everything. At this point, JGR also decided to support Hamlin in his decision.

“So then I slept on it, and I woke up, and I got the email from NASCAR, the things that they said I did, and I called Joe back and said, ‘Joe, I didn’t do any of these things.

“He put me on speaker phone, and I explained to everyone, here’s what they say I did. This is not truthful. This is not right. And at the end of it, they just said, ‘We understand. If you want to appeal, then we support you.’ And so, here we are.”

Hamlin’s drama seems like it will continue for some time until the result of the appeal is announced.

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