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Denny Hamlin Proposes a Solution to ‘Slice and Dice’ at Daytona as Fuel-Conservative Cup Series Teams Face Backlash

Published 02/22/2024, 12:49 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

Beyond the close-quarter action, the ‘Big One’ at the end, and the unexpected finish, there has been an aspect that has the NASCAR nation concerned. Following the 200-lap high-speed spectacle, many from the industry, including prominent drivers, have been expressing their thoughts about fuel and mileage issues in the race.

NASCAR is taking a “much deeper dive” into the fuel-saving strategy Cup teams employed during Monday’s Daytona 500 where drivers were racing at close to half-throttle at some points just to save fuel and stay out of danger, just to keep their hopes alive. This come after drivers raised their concerns. Drivers like Erik Jones and Chris Buescher have made their points clear and Joe Gibbs Racing veteran Denny Hamlin is the latest to the list, revealing his plan of action to bring things under control.

Denny Hamlin suggests “start with 3”

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Everything was perfect on Monday despite the rain extending the race. The fandom got their fair share of action and drama with a final lap crunch in the Daytona 500. However, one thing was pretty evident; drivers were sort of going half throttle, trying to save fuel and avoiding Chase Elliott‘s fate in Watkins Glen of going empty amidst the high-speed chase.

Monday’s fuel debacle was a proper problem that needs immediate attention. With the enthusiasts and experts sharing their takes on “X” Hamlin also jumped on board, dropping his valuable suggestion. Reacting to Jeff Gluck’s tweet that read, “Create a SS package that allows slicing and dicing through the field so there’s not as much emphasis on track position?” Hamlin tweeted, “Yes. Less drag. Start with 3 in shorter spoiler.” 

 

With the industry experts and drivers voicing their displeasure, NASCAR has let out a statement where they plan to slow down the Daytona 500.

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NASCAR planning to slow things down in the Daytona 500

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The pace early in the Daytona 500 was considerably slow, and it did not go unnoticed by NASCAR and the circumstances leading to that are to be reviewed by the organization. Going into fuel-saving mode, the field slowed the pace down dramatically in the first stage of the race. Generally, a full-speed lap around the 2.5-mile-long Daytona International Speedway in a pack would be somewhere around the 46- to 47-second bracket. But when the pace slowed Monday because the field was not full throttle, the lap times were over 50s.

Consequently, NASCAR is reviewing the matter. Senior Vice President of Competition for NASCAR, Elton Sawyer commented on Tuesday morning on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. “Ultimately, we want to drop the green flag on the race and they’re racing as hard as they can until they drop the checkered flag,” he said. “There’s some strategy in between there, and we will definitely take a much deeper drive into this particular situation and the strategy that goes into it.”

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Dale Earnhardt Jr Devises a Plan to Eradicate the ‘Fuel-Mileage’ Problem From Daytona

What did you think of the race? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Written by:

Kishore R

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Kishore is a NASCAR Writer at EssentiallySports. He actively covers live events and does detailed race analyses, helping fans understand the very nitty gritties of the sport. Using the right mix of storytelling and game expertise, Kishore can take his readers on a journey to see how a particular race was for some of their most loved drivers, like Kyle Busch and Chase Elliott.
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Edited by:

Rohan Karnad