NASCAR Suspends Chase Elliott For Crashing Denny Hamlin; Corey LaJoie To Subby Hunter Thomas May 30, 2023 1 comment
NASCAR has suspended Hendrick Motorsports driver, Chase Elliott ahead of this weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series race at World Wide Technology Raceway for intentionally wrecking Denny Hamlin during the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Prior to the end of Stage 2 on Monday at Charlotte, Denny Hamlin slid up the track and forced Elliott into the outside wall in Turn 4. Elliott bounced off the wall and then NASCAR determined that the Georgia native intentionally turned left to hook Hamlin who then went head-on into the frontstretch wall. The crash took place with 15 laps to go in the stage.
Following the crash, Hamlin called on NASCAR to suspend Elliott, and he even produced logistical data on Twitter while trying to prove his point. Hamlin is well aware of the situation as his 23XI Racing driver, Bubba Wallace was suspended last year for intentionally wrecking Elliott’s teammate, Kyle Larson at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
When asked if he intentionally crashed Hamlin, Elliott said, “No, like I said, once you hit the wall in these things, you can’t drive them anymore. So no, just unfortunate circumstances.”
NASCAR says that Elliott violated Sections 4.3.A and 4.4.C and D of the NASCAR Member Code of Conduct in the NASCAR Rule Book.
4.3.A that relates to this situation states:
Correct and proper conduct, both on and off the racetrack, is part of a Member’s responsibilities.
4.4.C that relates to this situation states:
Removing another Competitor from championship contention in a dangerous manner when not racing for position based on the available evidence and specific circumstances of the incident.
4.4.D that relates to this situation states:
Actions by a NASCAR Member that NASCAR finds to be detrimental to stock car racing or NASCAR.
Following the penalty by NASCAR, Hendrick Motorsports issued the following statement:
“We understand NASCAR’s need to maintain consistency in its officiating. The penalty will not be appealed, and we will submit a formal request for a playoff waiver.
“Corey LaJoie, 31, will drive the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 this weekend at World Wide Technology Raceway. We are grateful to Corey for stepping in and to the team at Spire Motorsports for making him available.”
Sunday’s Enjoy Illinois 300 presented by TicketSmarter will mark Elliott’s seventh missed raced this season. He was out earlier this year while he recovered from a snowboarding injury, where he injured his left leg. In the eight races that Elliott has competed in this season, two have been inside of the top-five, with an additional two top-10 finishes. His average finish as of the moment is 14.6.
LaJoie is currently competing in his eighth season on the NASCAR Cup Series level. So far this year at Spire Motorsports, LaJoie’s best finish has been a fourth-place effort at Atlanta Motor Speedway. He has also amassed an additional seven top-20 finishes, with the most recent be a 17th-place effort in the Coca-Cola 600.
The Enjoy Illinois 300 presented by TicketSmarter will broadcast live on FS1 at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 4.
Photo Credit: Hunter Thomas/TheFourthTurn.com