Denny Hamlin loses control in Turn 1, ending STP 500 day – Nascar

Defending STP 500 champion Denny Hamlin went to the garage and saw his day end early after his No. 11 Toyota sustained significant damage when he lost control in Turn 1 and slammed into the outside wall.


Hamlin was running in fifth place at the time of the wreck, on Lap 220 of 500.


JGR’s official Twitter account would confirm that the No. 11 team is done for the day. Hamlin finished 39th in the 40-car field with 221 laps completed.


Hamlin said he “wheel-hopped” into the turn.


“That’s the first time I’ve ever done that here,” Hamlin told FS1 in the .526-mile track’s garage. “A little embarrassing, but we were the best car those last 30 laps. We had gotten back to the top five and was picking up a lot of my speed on entry. As the tires wear, the rears get hotter, less grip, you can’t brake at the same amount, but it was really out of the blue. Never had a hint of it up until that moment.


“Bit of a rookie move on my part. I’ve been around here too much to do something like that. But learning for the fall and I’m really encouraged about how good our car came up through the pack. I really thought we had a car that could win.”


Hamlin, who was considered a favorite to repeat at Martinsville Speedway, had qualified eighth for Sunday’s race. He has won five Sprint Cup races at Martinsville Speedway.