Denny Hamlin stands with Kyle Larson over spotter disagreement

“I agree with Kyle Larson.“- Denny Hamlin said.

by Sead Dedovic
Denny Hamlin stands with Kyle Larson over spotter disagreement
© Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images Sport

An interesting situation occurred in the latest NASCAR Cup Series race when Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson made contact during the final stage. Larson's spotter, Tyler Monn, wasn't happy with how Larson handled the situation, believing he shouldn't let Hamlin get away with such actions. 

At one point, Monn said, "He runs you like that every time, you know why, because you let it happen." 

Kyle Larson was not pleased with these comments from his spotter and told him to "shut the * up." 

NASCAR fans had varied reactions to this, and even Denny Hamlin addressed the situation on his Actions Detrimental Podcast, supporting Larson. Denny stresses that spotters are often biased towards their drivers and don't consider other aspects of the race or how their driver is performing. He emphasizes that every driver strives for victory, and that's the priority.

“I agree with Kyle Larson. Tyler should shut the * up. Does he say that when Kyle squeezes guys up high? Probably not. You know, that’s the thing about spotters is that they are so biased to their guy, and that’s what they need to be at times. We’re racing for a win, there’s drops on our windshield.“-Hamlin said, as quoted by On3.

Denny Hamlin
Denny Hamlin© Sean Gardner/Getty Images Sport

There is much talk in the NASCAR world about the huge rivalry between Larson and Hamlin on the tracks. Hamlin explained this phenomenon, believing that both of them are the type of drivers who don't give an inch to the other. The experienced NASCAR driver admitted that at one point during the race, he saw Larson's car against his right rear and wondered if he had left enough space.

“The reason that me and Kyle race so closely at times because we’re usually racing for a win and neither will give each other an inch. I didn’t quite understand first of all why we were smoking tires down the front stretch. I got to the inside of him off of Turn 4. All of a sudden, I feel him grinding on the right rear. I’m like ‘Whoa, did I not leave enough room there?’ I look back and I watch the replay, I was like ‘Yeah I gave enough room. What the hell we doing door-banging each other down the front straightaway?'”- he continued.

Hamlin revealed his reaction during the race, thinking, "*, what the hell?" He noted that he was on four tires, which made him obviously faster than Larson, who had been slower all day. Larson was on two tires, putting him at a disadvantage, but he was trying to outrun the 45-car and couldn't quite complete that pass. Hamlin was approaching quickly, and he believed that Larson's chances of holding him off in that scenario were very slim.

The 43-year-old mentioned that he didn't have time to be delayed and needed to get clear of Larson. Hamlin believed that Larson wouldn't be able to hold him off, which meant Larson wouldn't win the race. They wouldn't give each other an inch to pass, so on the next lap, coming off Turn 4, Hamlin ran Larson up the track because he felt he had to move forward quickly. Denny couldn't afford to waste time battling with Larson as he needed to chase down the 45 car, especially with water on the windshield affecting visibility.

Denny Hamlin on Kyle Larson's team and rivalry 

Denny Hamlin also spoke about the reaction of Larson's team, pointing out that he is not interested in whether Larson's team thinks that there is a rivalry between him and Larson. He stresses that there is no rivalry between them and that such situations are quite common in the NASCAR world and NASCAR tracks. 

Hamlin believes that the reactions of individuals are superfluous, given that short-track racing can bring such things, emphasizing that his team is always fighting for the very top. The experienced driver is happy that he has another chance this season to finally win the championship and silence the critics. 

Each race carries a special dose of responsibility and desire for him because the question is whether Hamlin will have the opportunity to find himself in the same situation. Hamlin hopes that the next races could be something different for him, with the intention of being at the very top.

The NASCAR scene is hotter than ever, with many names looking to spoil the plans of others. Hamlin's experience can be an important link in the sequel and could decide in some aspects. Denny will play that card, but also the quality card, which he obviously has. He showed that in previous seasons.

Denny Hamlin Kyle Larson