Hamlin Drives For Five
August 1, 2010 | 10:29 A.M. EST
The Joe Gibbs Racing driver sped to victory lane in last June's visit to the 2.5-mile triangular track and Hamlin hopes to come away with a season sweep when the checkered flag flies on Sunday.
"Way too tough to predict wins in this sport, it’s just too competitive but I like coming here and this FedEx team always prepares really good cars for this track," said Hamlin who is tied with Jimmie Johnson for a series-leading five Sprint Cup wins this year.
"Indy was frustrating for us, we really raced all day trying to get a spot back on the lead lap so I think we are excited to get here and put last weekend behind us. We are building really good cars right now as we look ahead and learning a lot. We want to come here, have a good weekend and keep our focus on a championship and performing at that level where we can compete each and every week. If that means win here, we’ll take it."
With is spot in the point standings and subsequent place in the Chase for all intents and purpose locked in, Hamlin and crew chief Mike Ford might begin to take some chances over the next six races to score more wins and their bonus points for the playoff seedings.
But Hamlin cautions that going too far out of the box could lead to more problems down the road.
"I don’t think you can ever get to comfortable knowing how just about anything can happen in this sport but we’ve been running pretty good this year and are pretty happy with our progress," he said. "We can’t rest even though we are in a good spot, we need to push like everything is in doubt.
"We have some bonus points already that will help us later in the season but we know how good our competition is and know that every position or win we can grab this season is going to be necessary if we want to be running for a championship this season. We may try a few things here and there to see if we can find an advantage but the goal is to always win races – that never changes."