Denny Hamlin had a shot but could not get by Kevin Harvick to win Sunday’s Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Hamlin took two fresh tires on the final pit stop of the day while Harvick stayed on track under caution with 37 laps to go. As the laps wound down, Hamlin closed in and got to Harvick’s rear bumper making contact and running him up the track.
But Harvick maintained the top spot and despite a valiant effort on the final lap to get around, Hamlin crossed the finish line in second place.
“Well, I kind of shoved him up a little higher and tried to get him out of the groove,” Hamlin explained after the race. “I’m kind of watching it back right now. I mean, yeah, I just I wanted to just tap him there, but I didn’t want to completely screw him. I at least wanted to give him a fair shot there.
“Down the backstretch, I kind of let off, and I’m like, all right, well, I’ll just pass him on the outside and kind of do this thing the right way, and once I had that big run, he just turned right. But I would do the same thing. It was a fun race, and congratulations to him and his team. They made a great call there at the end.”
Hamlin had to start from the back of the field in a backup car when he crashed his primary mount on Friday’s practice. Despite coming up short of his third win of the season, Hamlin was still proud of the effort.
“It was fun,” he said. “We had a fast FedEx Express Camry today. Really happy about our performance and how we’ve been for the last few months, and Chris has done a great job with this backup car. This is nowhere near the car that I wrecked on Friday. S—, I don’t know. Second sucks.”