“Trying Not to Overload Bubba” – Denny Hamlin Explains How He Is Helping Bubba Wallace, NASCAR Team 23XI Racing

Published 03/15/2021, 12:15 PM EDT
Daytona Beach, Florida, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Bubba Wallace (23) makes a pit stop during the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


Denny Hamlin has had quite the start to his 2021 NASCAR season, despite not having a win yet. With another top-five finish at Phoenix Raceway on Sunday, Hamlin has taken a big lead in the points standings.

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Hamlin’s performance in the No. 11 car so far is even more impressive, due to the fact that he is also donning the role of a co-owner at 23XI Racing. While Hamlin has been among the leaders in all races yet, his team’s driver Bubba Wallace has faced the growing pains that come with a new team.

This is such a growing process for everyone. Everyone is working together for the first time. This is a new team. This is not an inherited team. This is a team built from scratch,” Hamlin said on 23XI Racing’s building process.

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Further, Hamlin recognized that the talented Wallace, trying to put the new team among the top ones, is already facing the pressure of performance.

Feb 14, 2021; Daytona Beach, Florida, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Bubba Wallace (23) gets ready for the restart of the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Denny Hamlin on his role in helping Bubba Wallace and the 23XI crew

“It’s a building process. They’re trying not to overload Bubba with too much information because he’s got already so much he has to learn on a weekly basis,” Hamlin said further.

He shed some light on how the team and Hamlin himself are trying to help their new driver through the process. The experienced NASCAR driver is constantly working with Bubba, from week-to-week, giving him some useful advice for each race.

“I try to do everything I can to help curb that learning curve. If I can help him out, give him some advice on a track that’s coming up, some notes out of the book that I keep, hopefully maybe it’s a help to him,” Hamlin said on the same.

How has the new role affected Hamlin’s NASCAR career?

Hamlin, a co-owner with Michael Jordan, also explained how his new duties have affected his own career. He pointed out that he does not have any days off during the week now as he utilizes his time to help Wallace and the #23 team crew with everything they need to improve as a unit, along with doing the same for his No. 11 team.

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 expressed.

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HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA – NOVEMBER 17: Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, prepares to start during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

On Sunday, Wallace registered his best finish so far in the No.23 car. The 27-year-old finished the race in 16th place after showing some decent speed in certain phases of the race.

Hamlin and the ownership/management group recognize the building process for a new team. While Wallace will get all the support he needs, he will have to show regular improvements to help the team reach its goals sooner.

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DIVE DEEPER

“Success Is Gonna Come” – Bubba Wallace Confident of Achieving NASCAR Goals With 23XI Racing Despite Tough Start

2 months ago

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Aayush Majumdar

1006 articles

Aayush Majumdar is a NASCAR content strategist, a Tennis Writer, and a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. He is well-tenured as a tennis and NASCAR writer, with over 900 articles across both sports. After pursuing a Post Graduate program in Sports Management, Aayush explored various roles in Sports Media, including a Sports Reporting role at a leading English daily.

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