No. 984
February 20, 2018

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The Line


FEBRUARY 20, 2019

(Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin (No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing FEDEX EXPRESS Toyota) held off teammate Kyle Busch (No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing M&Ms CHOCOLATE BAR Toyota) to win the 61st running of the Daytona 500, an event that was marred by the usual Shit Show of massive crashes, late-race cautions and red flags. The victory was Hamlin’s second Daytona 500 win and his 32nd in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series; and it broke a 47-race drought for the 38-year-old from Chesterfield, Va., who had stickers on his No. 11 Toyota Camry commemorating J.D. Gibbs, who died five weeks earlier; and Glen Wood, patriarch of the Wood Brothers Racing team, who passed away on Jan. 18. “It was just one of those days where I felt like it was meant to be,” said Hamlin, who was paired with new crew chief Chris Gabehart. “Hats off to Kyle as well. I know he was eagerly wanting his first victory in the Daytona 500, but today we just weren’t going to be denied." Erik Jones (No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing SPORTCLIPS Toyota) finished third to complete a 1-2-3 sweep for Toyota and Joe Gibbs Racing.