The No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing team earned their third victory of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series season. Hamlin led a race-high 137 laps and swept both stages in a dominant performance over the field Sunday night. Hamlin proved strong in the long runs, and his Fedex Racing machine was at the front for a majority of the race.
“This car was setup based on what we had in the fall last year going for the championship,” said Hamlin after winning the Dixie Vodka 400.
“We have been on a roll these last two years. Myself and Chris (Gabehart) got a good thing going. I still don’t think we’re at the top of our game yet. There is room to get better,” Hamlin stated in the media center following his victory.
Dixie Vodka 400 Results
The 12th race of the 2020 season featured 18 lead changes between 7 drivers, with Hamlin leading throughout. Only two cautions occurred on the racetrack. Ryan Newman’s tough night saw him involved in both.
Chase Elliott was in the hunt late in the race, running the top of the racetrack in an effort to catch leader Denny Hamlin. After closing the distance between himself and the leader, the No. 9 Hooters Chevy made contact with the outside wall, losing enough track position to put Elliott out of contention in the final laps.
Elliott finished 2nd, Ryan Blaney led 70 laps before finishing 3rd. Tyler Reddick capped another impressive night with a 4th place finish. Aric Almirola rounded out the Top 5 earning his first Top 5 finish of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series season.
Kevin Harvick continues to lead the points after a disappointing 26th place finish in the Dixie Vodka 400.
The Dixie Vodka 400 experienced multiple delays due to lightning in the area. Although there was no heavy rain, a lightning strike required a mandatory 30 minute delay before racing could resume. Once the storm settled, the boom of thunder made way for the roar of the engines for 400 miles.