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Hamlin fumes over $25,000 fine for Gen 6 remarks

Sprint Cup driver Denny Hamlin says he's "the most upset and angry I've been" after being fined $25,000 by NASCAR for comments he made in Phoenix.
Joe Gibbs Racing driver Denny Hamlin was furious on Thursday after being handed a $25,000 fine for comments he made that were deemed to be critical of the new NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Generation 6 model stock car.

"This is the most upset and angry I've been in a long, long time about anything that relates to NASCAR," said a visibly fuming Hamlin on Thursday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, saying that people were always going to have strong opinions and should be allowed to voice them.

"A lot of people hold their tongue, and some people don't, like Brad," he said, referring to candid comments Brad Keselowski has recently made to USA Today which had earned the reigning cup champion an invitation to the NASCAR hauler for a chat, but no fine. "But the truth is what the truth is, and I don't believe in this. Never going to believe in it.

“It's an opinion. It's not even a bad one,” Hamlin added. “I don't want to make things worse than they already are, and this is something that was absolutely nothing that got blown into something, and it's just going to be worse for them, so just let them deal with it."

But he ended on a defiant note: "As far as I'm concerned, I'm not going to pay the fine," he stated. "If they suspend me, they suspend me. I don't care at this point."

NASCAR levied the fine citing a violation of section 12-1 of the 2013 NASCAR Rule Book relating to actions detrimental to stock car racing. Under NASCAR rules, Hamlin can appeal the fine, but if he refuses to pay then NASCAR can simply deduct it from any prize money he is paid from upcoming races.

“Following the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event last Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway, Denny Hamlin made some disparaging remarks about the on-track racing that had taken place that afternoon," said NASCAR in the official statement announcing the fine. "While NASCAR gives its competitors ample leeway in voicing their opinions when it comes to a wide range of aspects about the sport, the sanctioning body will not tolerate publicly made comments by its drivers that denigrate the racing product."

After finishing in third place last Sunday, Hamlin credited his JGR pit crew for the positions he'd made up during the race, explaining that there was little he could do about overtaking on track.

"I don't want to be the pessimist, but it did not race as good as our Generation 5 cars," he said after the race, referring to the much-disliked Car of Tomorrow models. "This is more like what the Generation 5 was at the beginning."




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Robin Pemberton, NASCAR Vice President of Competition, speaks with the media during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series testing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 7, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Office Toyota stands in the garage area during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series testing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 7, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 Interstate Batteries Toyota, and Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 National Guard Chevrolet, lead a group of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Patriotic Chevrolet, climbs from his car after being involved in an on track incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 United States Air Force Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 after the race was called for weather at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 United States Air Force Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 after the race was called for weather at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 United States Air Force Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 after the race was called for weather at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Camping World Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, crosses the finish line to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky.  (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Aflac Ford, puts a winner sticker on his car as he celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 22, 2014 in Sonoma, California.  (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, crashes into a tire barrier during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 22, 2014 in Sonoma, California.  (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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ottawanker - Unregistered

March 08, 2013 3:28 PM

I think NASCAR would be happier if their were no drivers in the sport... Then they could just sell 3 hours of ads, not have to bother showing any racing or bother trying to control their drivers. Pure profit.



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