At the Bristol Motor Speedway, Kevin Harvick widened the abyss between himself and Denny Hamlin. Admittedly, Hamlin did not help his own case as he found himself all the way down in 21st place.
To make matters worse, he got involved in a small incident with his teammate, Martin Truex Jr. Truex slid into the wall, and poor old Hamlin had nowhere to go, except into his Joe Gibbs Racing partner.
This also dropped Truex Jr. down to 24th place, finally in the end. Murphy’s Law of ‘everything that can go wrong, will go wrong’, hit the JGR team like a bulldozer. Apparently, Hamlin, Kyle Busch, and Erik Jones failed the pre-race technical inspection and got sent to the back of the grid.
I don’t believe in the word “luck” being used in racing but damn.. I’m ready for a reset.
— Denny Hamlin (@dennyhamlin) September 20, 2020
Is this just bad luck for Denny Hamlin?
While Jones was not too badly affected, since he was not involved in the Playoffs, the same could not be said for Hamlin and Busch. Martin Truex Jr. was lucky to be the only JGR driver to escape the stewards’ office. Unfortunately, Lady Luck deserted him during the race and dragged Hamlin along for the ride.
Although Kyle Busch finished in a fine 2nd place, the race was less than ideal for him. As it turned out, he was leading the race when Joey Logano’s lapped car held him up. That was enough for the runaway championship leader, Kevin Harvick, to overtake and win.
However, Busch refused to let him out of his sight and hounded him all the way. In the last 40 laps, both drivers dug into the darkest recesses of their skill and talent pool.
Both drivers displayed incredible skill and composure under pressure to finish where they did. Kyle Busch kept Harvick honest, but the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing driver was quick when it really counted.
In the end, poor old Busch had to settle for another winless weekend. Furthermore, Denny Hamlin could only watch helplessly as Harvick went further and further out of reach.