“Ripped Me a New A*” – Denny Hamlin Reveals Secret Fight With “F*king Mad” Joe Gibbs Over $300,000 Loss

Published 02/15/2023, 11:40 AM EST

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Having raced all these years for Joe Gibbs, Denny Hamlin has learned a thing or two about being a team owner, something about his response to a question regarding allowing one of his drivers a chance in the Daytona weekend. The 23XI Racing co-owner was asked if he’d give Travis Pastrana a shot at running in the Duels if he qualifies on speed.

“No. Did I mention these cars are $300,000? And we have one backup car for all three teams,” Hamlin replied in a recent episode of his podcast show, Actions Detrimental.

“So no, the answer is no.”


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Following up on that, he revealed a hilarious story about him and Joe Gibbs, and how he acquired the wisdom he has now about this particular subject thanks to a big lesson he learned after not following his boss’ orders.

via Getty

Denny Hamlin went against Gibbs’ orders and ended up in a bad spot

Hamlin revealed that while he always liked to practice, Joe Gibbs wasn’t of that same opinion. In fact, one time Gibbs got so “f**k**g mad” that his top lip began quivering, which is a sure sign of Gibbs losing it.

This conflict led to the boss giving his boss’ orders, or what Hamlin said, “more like a request than an order,” about not practicing.

“I don’t want you guys tearing up cars during practice. It just costs too much money and doesn’t give us enough reward,” Hamlin recalled Gibbs saying.

“My argument to Joe was, ‘Well Joe, how are you expecting me to make the game-winning play if I don’t practice?’ I have to practice, I have to practice and put myself in positions to go out there and make that three-wide move that I made off of turn 4 in 2016. I need reps. You cannot expect me to be great with no reps,” he continued. “And he’s like, ‘..nobody else practices so we’re not gonna practice.'”

But despite this, Hamlin practiced, or he “sort of” did. He got behind a pack, but soon, somebody crashed in the front from which the #11 driver thought he was immune, but then suddenly, someone came and hit him from behind and destroyed his car.

WATCH THIS STORY: Denny Hamlin Leaves NASCAR Fans in a Frenzy After Boasting Partner Michael Jordan’s Signature Collection

Hamlin got a massive penalty from Joe Gibbs but then redeemed himself


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After he wrecked the car in practice, having gone against his boss’ wish, Joe Gibbs confronted Denny Hamlin for what he did, and for what he cost his team.

“Joe pulled me into a motorhome and ripped me a new a** like you would not believe,” Hamlin recalled.


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“I mean, I’ve never heard him say this because Joe, listen he’s not a guy, he’s not gonna nickel and dime me, but he says to me, ‘You’re paying for that car,’ I said, ‘What do you mean?’, he’s like, ‘I told you I didn’t want practice and you went out there, and defied me, and you practiced, and you wrecked, and so you are gonna pay for that car.'”

USA Today via Reuters

After this, Hamlin simply agreed to pay for the car. But then, he won the race, which changed things a little between him and his boss. “I won the race and I’m in the victory lane, he’s like, ‘Don’t worry about that car, we’re good,'” Hamlin recalled.


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“I said, ‘Thanks Joe, I appreciate that.'”


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Shaharyar is a NASCAR writer at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Journalism from Amity University, he has been a passionate follower of motorsports for a better part of the decade. While Kyle Busch is always his first pick, he also considers Kyle Larson a legend in the making.
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Edited by:

Akash Pandhare