It has been a long and strange week for Denny Hamlin as his appeal was finally heard by the Motorsports Appeals Panel this week. Having never appealed a penalty before in his 19-year Cup Series career, Denny Hamlin did not know what to expect.
With the help of some of the brass at Joe Gibbs Racing, he built what he believed was a pretty strong case against NASCAR, hoping that the appeals panel would overturn the penalty. Throughout the hearing, Hamlin’s confidence grew as he felt NASCAR had conceded that his acts were not in any way shape or form egregious.
As we all know, the Motorsports Appeals Panel ultimately upheld the Denny Hamlin penalty and the whole process ended, by Hamlin’s standards, unceremoniously.
You Need To Know:
- Denny Hamlin was fined $50,000 and docked 25 points after admitting on his podcast, the appropriately titled Actions Detrimental, for intentionally “making contact” with Ross Chastain at Phoenix. His primary argument during the appeal process was to point out that, yes, he did make contract with Chastain but did not “wreck” him. The data Hamlin speaks about in the interview with FOX Sports’ Bob Pockrass below is that he didn’t turn the wheel into Chastain nor did he take the hands off the wheel; he simply turned left, knowing that it wasn’t going to stick.
- His own failed attempt at an appeal wasn’t the only thing Hamlin had to criticize. The week before, Hendrick Motorsports also failed to appeal their case. However, in the case of HMS, only the monetary fines and crew chief fines were upheld while the points penalties (which is what pays the best to the teams at the end of the season) were rescinded. Meanwhile, Kaulig Racing, who was hit with an identical penalty for nearly identical circumstances, got their penalty in its entirety upheld. This certainly gives off the vides of Hendrick Motorsports favorability, whether legitimate or not. Hamlin points out that there is a clear lack of transparency as the appeals panel is not required to give an explanation for ruling one way or the other.
- Many fans have long pointed out the preferential treatment Hendrick Motorsports receives, the Kaulig discrepancy being the most recent. Many of them want not only more transparency with the Motorsports Appeals Panel and NASCAR in general but also for the appeals panel to have less power in changing the penalties themselves. Most are in agreement that it would be best served if the entirety of the penalty was either overturned or upheld in each individual case.
When asked about the Hendrick penalties dished out this week, Hamlin stated that with NASCAR being as angry as they were about the changes to the penalties, he wasn’t surprised that NASCAR brought the hammer down again. He also alluded that the Garage 56 entry was a concern with most other teams that is not HMS.
The Main Character
Denny Hamlin is really the one who has been most vocal about the recent penalties and appeals process. In the EMERGENCY podcast episode of Actions Detrimental posted to YouTube late this week, Hamlin breaks down the appeals process in general and makes his case against NASCAR.
In The Stands
Wilfred Toruson quietly tweets that she agrees with Hamlin’s comments.
Enough about the penalties and all those conspiracy theories, Mr. King wants to know just what in the heck Denny Hamlin is wearing!
J Donut says that Denny Hamling is good for the sport. I agree. His podcast is quickly becoming NASCAR royalty.
Clayton Langeland is seemingly very angrily keeping his mouth shut.
Clanker 24 said that Denny is the only one who the decision does not make sense to. Do you agree?
Aaaad more wardrobe bashing from Joey B. Denny ain’t hip enough to pull off that coat…
Do you agree that this decision by the Motorsports Appeals Panel is a tough one to swallow? Do you want more transparency? Let us at the Daily Downforce know! And take it a step farther and let NASCAR know!