NASCAR: Denny Hamlin Says He’s ‘Proud’ of Bubba Wallace After Bristol Dirt Race

by Emily Morgan

They may be competitors on the track, but Denny Hamlin remains supportive of fellow NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace. After Wallace finished in the 27th spot at the Food City Dirt Race at Bristol Motorspeedway on Monday, Hamlin offered his support via Twitter.

“Proud of you guys. Taken big steps over the last month. Keep digging. Stay patient. Breaks will come,” Hamlin tweeted at Wallace. Hamlin, who also competed in the NASCAR Cup Series dirt race, came out in much better ranking, claiming the third spot, just behind Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Joey Logano came out victorious.

“I was kind of guessing, but I thought I could – on that last restart – run the top-end hard, but they didn’t prep it in-between cautions like they did before, so it was just marbles up there,” Denny Hamlin said about the dirt race. It was the first NASCAR Cup Series’ dirt race since 1970.

“I’m proud of this whole FedEx Camry team. Man, I thought I had a shot there. I cut (Logano) too many breaks there when he was cutting us off, but at the end of the day it looked like he had a little bit better car in the long run. I’m proud of this whole team. We are third-best again.”

Denny Hamlin Offers Support to Wallace & 23XI Racing Team

While NASCAR is undeniably cutthroat, it’s nice to see two drivers have respect for one another. Denny Hamlin and Bubba Wallace’s friendship began after Hamlin became a co-owner of 23XI racing alongside Michael Jordan. According to Hamlin, when he’s not competing with Wallace on the track, he helps Wallace and the #23 crew improve.

“Now the middle part of the week is really where I focus on 23, 11, go to the shop, talk to the team, the engineers, crew chiefs, figure out how we can be better. What do we need to go faster,” Hamlin said.

Denny Hamlin, who had built a relationship with Jordan long before he met Wallace, took their business relationship to new heights in 2020 when they formed the 23XI Racing Team, which would include Wallace behind the wheel.

“Bubba has shown tremendous improvement since joining the Cup Series, and we believe he’s ready to take his career to a higher level,” Hamlin said in a statement at the time of the announcement. Before this past Daytona 500, Jordan added, “We would not have the talent to win.”