|Denny Hamlin races to the Shootout win, the second of his career|
That's what Denny Hamlin asked immediately after taking the checkered flag to win the exhibition Sprint Unlimited Saturday night at Daytona International Speedway.
After missing four races and struggling for most of the 2013 season with a back injury, Hamlin faces a lot of questions entering 2014. He started answering those questions by winning a thrilling victory to kick off the new year.
With a broken bone in his back causing him pain, Hamlin suffered through a miserable season last year. He won the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, however, and came out with guns ablazing Saturday night.
Did he have something to prove?
"He's on a mission," teammate Kyle Busch said.
"I like to prove it to myself," Hamlin said. "I started feeling better last year and after the win at Homestead, I realized that we run as good as I feel, and I feel pretty comfortable in the car. I can do about anything I feel like. You don't like to talk about what you can do, you want to show people."
Hamlin made a daring three-wide move for the lead with two laps to go and then helf off Brad Keselowski and Busch to win a race that was marred by a big crash that took out nearly half the field.
"Any questions?" Hamlin asked over his team radio after taking the checkered flag.
"The best car won, that's for sure," he said in victory lane. "That's two in a row for us."
Keselowski finished second, followed by Busch, Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick as just eight cars were running at the finish.
Hamlin, who won the 2006 Sprint Unlimited as a rookie, led 27 of the 75 laps.
The big crash erupted on Lap 35, wiping out seven cars and leaving just eight running at the finish.
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Sprint Unlimited Results