In a quest to make it into the 2011 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship, Virginia’s own Denny Hamlin drove his way to the checkered flag Sunday at Michigan International Speedway.
Sunday’s win is Hamlin’s first of the season, after winning eight times in 2010 and contending for the series title. He entered the weekend 12th in points with no guarantee that he would make the 2011 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship. With Sunday’s victory, Hamlin jumped to the ninth position in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings and with the win is one step closer to securing a spot in the championship field.
“This is the point of the season where we really need to start hitting our stride, and hopefully we’ve got another good 10 weeks before the Chase starts,” said Hamlin. “Realistically, you know if the whole world collapses and ends, you’re still one win away from getting a Chase spot, pretty much. We know two wins pretty much puts you in. From here on out, we know we’re one win away.”
Hamlin will return to Richmond International Raceway, his home track, on Saturday, September 10 for the “One Last Race to Make The Chase,” as the defending race winner. Tickets for the September 9-10 NASCAR doubleheader weekend are on sale now and can be purchased at http://www.rir.com www.rir.com or by calling the Richmond International Raceway ticket office at 866-455-RACE (7223).