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

"Since being fined in 2010 I have been a lot more careful about what I say to media and I felt this past weekend felt completely in my rights to give a assessment of the question asked," he continued. "In the end there are no winners. I said today I would not pay the fine. I stand by that and will go through the process of appealing. Trust me, this is not about the money. It's much deeper. I will now shift my focus on giving FedEx and my team what they deserve this weekend, a win."

Other drivers were being careful not to get caught up in the row, although Richard Childress Racing star Jeff Burton commented that "NASCAR has got to be careful not to be too strict on drivers" and suggested that the fine was "a little bit of an overreaction on NASCAR's part."

After topping the Thursday practice times in Las Vegas, Greg Biffle found a more arch way of communicating his view on the Hamlin fine when asked for his view on the Generation 6 car's handling earlier in the day.

"It's good. Car is good. Everything is very, very good," he said. "Can I leave now? I'm going to go be happy and good."

Those outside the immediate NASCAR sphere of influence could afford to be more outspoken about the situation.

"Just because it's NASCAR's ball and their ballpark and they make the rules doesn't necessarily mean that there can be censorship, and there appears to be a lot of censorship in this fine," said Kyle Petty, the former Cup driver and now analyst for the SPEED cable channel. "NASCAR wants drivers to have personalities and character and to express themselves but only if they say positive and not negative things. I don't know anyone who can do that.

"It's hard to believe that this sport has come to this where we fine drivers for comments," he added. "Whatever happened to fining drivers for big motors and illegal bodies and cheating on the track? Now it appears they don't have a right to have an opinion off the race track.

"I could not survive in this sport as a driver at this time," Petty admitted. "I'd be paying a fine every week. I'd be broke."

After winning the Phoenix race, Carl Edwards had also expressed frustration with the current state of the cars, but framed his comments in a way that was apparently more constructive than Hamlin had in NASCAR's eyes.

"After the Vegas race you are going to have all of the opinions you want on that subject because that's gonna be the first race where we see huge speeds, huge reliance on downforce, and I think that we're really gonna know where we stand after that," the Phoenix race winner had said in a teleconference on Wednesday.

"Whenever this subject has come up with NASCAR, with the media, with my team, I am 100 percent for taking all of the downforce away from the race cars and just racing mechanical grip and if you have maybe a couple of stagger options for the tires to help gauge your balance, and that would be something Goodyear would have to produce, that's been my take forever just because I really enjoy the mechanical grip aspect of the racing," he had explained.

"At all of this testing NASCAR has run cars with tons of downforce then a little bit of downforce and this is the package they came up with, so what our job to do as drivers and teams is to go out and tune these cars the best we can and see how they work," he continued. "NASCAR told us after Vegas and a couple of these fast races early in the season, we would kind of take a look at where we stand and there still might be more changes coming, so I think it's a moving target and it will really be up to all of us to decide what we want."



Related Pictures

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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)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, and Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Ground Toyota, lead the field to the green flag to start the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 1, 2015 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Sarah Glenn/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Percision Chevrolet, lead the field during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 57th Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 22, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, and Clint Bowyer, driver of the #15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota, race three-wide during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 57th Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 22, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Erik Jones, driver of the #20 GameStop/Rock Candy Toyota, Darrell Wallace Jr., driver of the #6 Ford EcoBoost Ford, and Landon Cassill, driver of the #01 Flex Seal Chevrolet, race three-wide during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Alert Today Florida 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 21, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin in the #11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota at Daytona. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet, and Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, lead the field to the green flag for the running of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Budweiser Duel 1 at Daytona International Speedway on February 19, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, lead a pack of cars during practice for the 57th Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 18, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, takes the chequered flag to win the 3rd Annual Sprint Unlimited at Daytona at Daytona International Speedway on February 14, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the 3rd Annual Sprint Unlimited at Daytona at Daytona International Speedway on February 14, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the 3rd Annual Sprint Unlimited at Daytona at Daytona International Speedway on February 14, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 Dollar General Toyota, celebrates with a burnout after winning the 3rd Annual Sprint Unlimited at Daytona at Daytona International Speedway on February 14, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 14, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, passes Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, to take the lead and win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet, Miss Sprint Cup Kim Coon, Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, pose for a photo prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Freight Toyota, climbs into his car in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Goody`s Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway on October 24, 2014 in Martinsville, Virginia. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet, speaks during a press conference prior to practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 7, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/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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