Denny Hamlin calls out NASCAR management for Subsequent Gen issues

TALLADEGA, Ala. — Denny Hamlin cites “unhealthy management” from NASCAR for making a automotive that it says must be redesigned after two drivers have suffered concussion-like signs in crashes this 12 months.

Hamlin and Kevin Harvick have been most outspoken in regards to the security of the automotive this 12 months. Chase Elliott spoke up Saturday about how “upset” he’s “that we put ourselves within the field that we’re in.”

Hamlin stated different drivers should be part of them in being heard.

“I do know loads of younger guys are simply completely satisfied to be right here, however they ain’t going to be completely satisfied when their brains are scrambled for the remainder of their lives,” Hamlin stated Saturday at Talladega Superspeedway.

NASCAR had not provided a response to Hamlin’s feedback as of Saturday afternoon.

Driver frustrations with the Subsequent Gen automotive proceed to develop, as Alex Bowman grew to become the second driver to be pressured to overlook at the least a race for concussion-like signs.

Bowman crashed final weekend at Texas Motor Speedway and skilled complications and different signs of a concussion earlier this week, in line with Hendrick Motorsports President Jeff Andrews.

Bowman went to a health care provider on Thursday and the group introduced that day Bowman wouldn’t race Sunday. No timetable for his return has been introduced. Noah Gragson will drive Bowman’s automotive Sunday.

Kurt Buschwho drives for Hamlin’s 23XI Racing, continues to be out due to a head damage he suffered after he crashed July 23 at Pocono Raceway. Busch stated this week that he’s “hopeful” of racing this season.

Hamlin unleashed a torrent of criticisms Saturday in regards to the automotive and sequence officers for a problem he stated drivers introduced up greater than a 12 months in the past.

Requested how the game received so far with the automotive, Hamlin stated: “Dangerous management.”

Requested learn how to keep away from the identical factor from occurring, Hamlin stated: “New management.”

As for the modifications that have to be made in NASCAR management, Hamlin stated: “I do not know. You can begin on the prime and work your means down.”

NASCAR has a crash check scheduled subsequent week on the rear clip and rear bumper of the automotive. That is an enchancment that might be made to the automotive for subsequent season. A criticism in regards to the automotive is how stiff the rear is and the way rear-end impacts have felt extra violent to drivers this season. The crash check is the primary since a full automotive crash check final December.

For Hamlin, the rear is simply a begin to what must be achieved to the automotive.

“The automotive must be redesigned,” Hamlin stated. “It wants a full redesign. It could possibly nonetheless be referred to as Subsequent Gen, but it surely must be redesigned.

“It must be redesigned in every single place. Entrance, center, rear, competitors, the entire thing must be redesigned. We have got a troublesome Martinsville race developing. It may be robust. This factor is simply going to get uncovered about how unhealthy it races. That is simply part of it. Competitors and security, we would prefer to have all of it higher, however actually we simply took a step again in security and competitors this 12 months.”

Hamlin additionally is aware of it is too late for a redesign for subsequent 12 months.

“If I have been to run this and say, ‘all proper, we will have a brand new automotive,’ we would already be achieved with testing proper now for subsequent 12 months’s automotive,” Hamlin stated. “We’ve not even begun. We’re simply means too behind. This complete sport is behind.”

However Hamlin stated it was “possible” for NASCAR to do a redesign of the automotive.

“It is simply (that) NASCAR has to concede that they don’t seem to be succesful and let the groups do it,” he stated.

That is not going. NASCAR has contract with the suppliers of every half and people offers, whereas they are often damaged underneath sure circumstances, are multi-year offers.

Hamlin stated drivers introduced up issues in regards to the automotive final 12 months. There had been issues in regards to the automotive and the way arduous the influence felt after William Byron‘s crash in testing at Auto Membership Speedway in March 2020.

“We truly, because the drivers, did not try this docu-series final 12 months as a result of we did not really feel comfy with this Subsequent Gen automotive and the shortage of the security testing that had been achieved earlier than they began saying that they have been going to run it,” Hamlin stated. “We threw up pink flags over a 12 months in the past and so they simply did not reply. They simply saved pushing this automotive has received to be on the observe in any respect price. In any respect price.”

In an interview final month, John Probst, NASCAR senior vp of Racing Innovation, informed NBC Sports activities that he feels one misunderstanding with the automotive is the collaboration between NASCAR, groups and producers.

“I feel that generally while you learn the driving force quotes and the group suggestions, crew chiefs are posting issues on Twitter, it creates the sense of NASCAR vs. them vs. the world,” Probst stated.

“Actually, it is not like that. I want individuals might see how properly we truly do work with the engineers on these groups, sorting by way of the issues.

“I really feel like we work hand-in-hand with them, however loads of instances when it will get to the general public eye, for no matter purpose, or if it is within the warmth of the second, it comes throughout as if ‘NASCAR is making us do that,’ or ‘That is the dumbest factor ever,’ however I feel, in actuality, that’s so removed from the reality.”

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