|Denny Hamlin is 6/1 to win at Martinsville.|
#11 FedEx Ground Toyota
Joe Gibbs Racing
Race: STP 500
Date/Time: March 25/2p.m. ET
Distance: 500 laps/263 miles
Track Length: .526-mile
Track Shape: Oval
Banking: 12 degrees
2017 Winner: Brad Keselowski
Press Kit: Download the 2018 FedEx Racing press materials at www.fedexracing.com/presskit, including bios for Denny Hamlin, Mike Wheeler and Joe Gibbs Racing leadership, program highlights and statistics.
Auto Club Recap: Denny Hamlin finished sixth in Sunday’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway, rebounding from an early error on pit road to score his fourth top-10 finish of the season. The first yellow flag of the day waved on lap 39 for a single-car incident with Hamlin running 11th in the #11 FedEx Express Toyota. The caution allowed Hamlin to make his way to pit road for his second stop of the day for four tires and fuel, however upon entering his stall, he slightly overshot his marks and was forced to correct his mistake, costing the #11 FedEx team 10 positions in the race off pit road. Despite the setback, Hamlin worked to remedy the error, and he capitalized on his long-run speed throughout the remainder of the 400-mile race to find his spot amongst the field’s top 10, earning bonus points in each of the race’s first two Stages (finishing 10th and fourth respectively). Hamlin remains sixth in the overall points standings after his sixth-place finish at Auto Club, trailing 40 points behind new points leader Martin Truex Jr. after five races this season.
Martinsville Preview: After a three-week stint out West, the Series makes its way back to the East Coast for a 500-lap short track race at Martinsville Speedway. Hamlin is no stranger to the flat, half-mile oval, and after 24 Cup Series starts at the ‘paperclip’, the Chesterfield, Va., native has collected a career-best five wins and three pole positions, as well as 12 top-five and 18 top-10 finishes. He was forced to a 30th-place finish at last year’s spring event after sustaining damage from a multi-car wreck late in the race.
Delivering Laps for FedEx Cares: This season, FedEx is tying the performance of the #11 FedEx Toyota on the track to its efforts to improve road safety through a new program, Delivering Laps for FedEx Cares, by donating $111 for each lap Hamlin leads and $11,000 for each race victory to Safe Kids Worldwide, a nonprofit working to protect kids on the road, at home and at play. FedEx will also contribute $111,000 to Safe Kids if the #11 team wins the 2018 NASCAR championship. New for the 2018 season, the Denny Hamlin Foundation will also match the total donation to Safe Kids Worldwide.
After five regular season races, Hamlin has led 82 laps resulting in an $9,102 donation to Safe Kids Worldwide which will be matched by the Denny Hamlin Foundation. Fans can track the total amount donated to date from the Delivering Laps for FedEx Cares program on the homepage of FedExRacing.com.
Track: Martinsville Speedway
Wins: 5 (career-best)
Poles: 3 (tied for career-best)
Top-5: 12 (career-best)
Top-10: 18 (career-best)
Laps Led: 1,394
Avg. Start: 9.6
Avg. Finish 10
What are your expectations for this weekend at Martinsville?
“We’ve had a strong start to the season, we’re just still searching for that little bit of speed we need to really contend for a win. Obviously, Martinsville is a place where I know I can be successful, so I’m looking forward to getting back there.”