Posted by kryan October - 1 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS

Via FedEx Racing

Denny Hamlin leads at DoverDenny Hamlin finished eighth in Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Dover (Del.) International Speedway in the #11 FedEx Office Toyota, forced to pit for a splash of fuel with 10 laps remaining after running in the top-three throughout the day at the ‘Monster Mile.’

The 31-year-old Virginia native started on the pole — his third of the 2012 season — and led the race’s first 34 laps before giving way to Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch. From there, Hamlin remained in the top-three for the majority of the 400-lap event won by Brad Keselowski, keeping pace with Busch and Jimmie Johnson through the race’s midpoint.

However, the event’s final caution came outside the FedEx team’s fuel window, and barring another yellow flag, they were six laps short on gas. As the laps clicked green and others were able to stretch their fuel to the distance, Hamlin dove to pit road from the lead on Lap 390 for a splash of gas and finished eighth.

“It’s disappointing to run in the top-three all day and finish eighth, but I can’t complain about a top-10 run at Dover,” said Hamlin, following the race. “Darian (Grubb, crew chief) brought a great FedEx Toyota to the track, and we were one of the best cars in the race. It’s unfortunate to see the caution come out just outside of our fuel window, but those are the breaks sometimes. We know that we’re fast enough to compete for race wins each week, and that’s all we can focus on.”

The finish kept Hamlin third in the Chase standings following Dover, 16 points behind leader Keselowski after three of 10 playoff races.

The Series returns to action at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway on Sunday, Oct. 7.

Tags : , 2012

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