Denny Hamlin Trolled NASCAR After He, Kyle Busch DQ’d at Pocono

  • Denny Hamlin and teammate Kyle Busch finished first and second at Pocono but were later disqualified.
  • NASCAR discovered unapproved tape under the cars’ paint schemes.
  • Hamlin showed on social media that he is still enjoying the trophy and the champagne.

In a wild weekend that saw Denny Hamlin lose a win and $300,000, he is still celebrating and making it clear that there are some things that NASCAR can’t take away.

Hamlin was the first driver to cross the finish line during NASCAR’s race at Pocono on Sunday, just in front of teammate Kyle Busch. However, later in the evening, their cars failed inspections when unauthorized tape was found underneath the cars’ “paint” (actually a plastic wrap). Chase Elliott was declared the winner.

Hamlin was the first driver in more than 60 years to win a race and then be disqualified later.

Elliott said he wouldn’t ask for the trophy, noting that he didn’t feel like he deserved it, and Hamlin could keep it if he wanted it. It sure seems like he does — even if only for its resale value.

On Monday, Hamlin shared a video to social media, seemingly trolling NASCAR over the disqualification. He is shown eating next to the winners’ trophy and enjoying a glass of champagne from the winning bottle. He added the caption, “Live on EBay. 1 tainted trophy and 1 used bottle of champagne.”

Somebody noticed that the bag of M&Ms in the mouth of the trophy’s eagle had been replaced. When asked about the new item in the mouth, Hamlin wrote: “That would be a piece of clear tape worth about 300k. (Not to be included in sale).”

Hamlin also suggested that NASCAR would not be getting the checkered flag back either.

After the win, NASCAR shared a photo of Hamlin’s daughter celebrating with the checkered flag that is typically given to the winner. Hamlin commented, “Yeah, good luck getting that back.”

Both cars had unapproved tape hidden on the front bumper

After the race, NASCAR Cup Series Managing Director Brad Moran offered some insight into the cause of the disqualification, saying some material was found where it shouldn’t have been.

“There were some issues discovered that affect [aerodynamics] of the vehicle,” Moran said. “The part was the front fascia, and there really was no reason why there was some material that was somewhere that it shouldn’t have been, and that does basically come down to a DQ.”

The “fascia” refers to the front bumper and grille of the cars. According to Bob Pockrass, it appears NASCAR found some extra material underneath the cars’ “paint,” which is actually a wrap these days. This also explained why the infraction was not found during the pre-race inspection.

“NASCAR says the issues weren’t found in prerace tech because they don’t take the wrap off during prerace tech,” Pockrass wrote. “Taking the wrap off in certain places is part of postrace tech.”

You can see how the wrap is applied to the cars before a race here.

On Monday, the team issued a statement admitting that extra material was on the cars but the addition had not been approved by the team during the building process for the cars.

“In our review of the post-race infractions on the 11 and 18 cars at Pocono it was discovered that a single piece of clear tape was positioned over each of the lower corners of the front fascia ahead of the left-front and right-front wheel openings on both cars,” the statement read. “The added pieces were 2 inches wide and 5.5 inches long with a thickness of 0.012 inches and installed under the wrap. This change in our build process was not properly vetted within our organization and we recognize it is against NASCAR’s rules. We apologize to everyone for this mistake, and we have made changes to our processes to ensure that it does not happen again.”

The team also announced that they would not appeal the DQs.

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