FedEx Racing Team Tallies 11th-Place Result in Rain-Shortened Race in MichiganJune 15, 2015
Denny Hamlin finished 11th in Sunday’s rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway, benefiting from a caution midway through a cycle of green flag pit stops to regain track position prior to a big rain shower ended the event at the two-mile track won by Kurt Busch.
Hamlin lost position early in the race after a four-tire stop moved him back to 24th from a 13th-place starting position in the #11 FedEx Express Toyota. The race -- scheduled for 200 laps -- was red-flagged three different times for rain, and was called after just 138 laps.
“We could just never get the track position we needed until right before the final (rain) shower,” said Hamlin, a two-time Michigan winner. “Our FedEx Camry was decent, but we could never make our way up to the front until it was too late. Dave (Rogers, crew chief) made some big swings on adjustments to tighten us up, and we made the most of the day.”
Hamlin battled a loose condition from the drop of the green flag, and the condition worsened in Turn 3 on restarts on a green race track. The handle started to come to him after the second rain delay, with Hamlin turning laps equal to the leaders as the race reached the scheduled midway point.
Busch won his second race of the year, followed by Dale Earnhardt Jr., Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth and Joey Logano.
The finish by Hamlin kept him 13th in the NASCAR standings after 15 of 26 regular season races, 164 points behind leader Kevin Harvick. The Series will enjoy an off-weekend before returning to action at the Sonoma Raceway road course on June 28.