Denny Hamlin’s controversial win over Kyle Larson sparks debate
Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson put on a thrilling battle for the lead in the final lap Sunday at Kansas Speedway, with a little nudge by Hamlin all he needed to score a big win.
Heading into the final lap of the NASCAR Cup Series race, Hamlin closed in on Larson’s back bumper, looking for an opening to pass. Hamlin nudged him once, getting Larson a little loose. After backing off a little Hamlin charged, once again nudging Larson.
That second tap got Larson loose, sending him into the wall. That allowed Hamlin to get by and sail on to the checkered flag for his 49th career NASCAR Cup Series victory. After brushing the wall, Larson regained control and hung on to finish second.
Larson did not seem upset by Hamlin’s move.
“I was really loose … he was just a little better than me at the end,” Larson told FS1 after the race. “He was just touching me, and it had me out of control.”
— The Comeback (@thecomeback) May 7, 2023
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The FS1 broadcast crew broke down the winning pass, and everyone agreed: That’s just racing.
NASCAR fans, on the other hand, had mixed emotions about the finish. Many fans thought Hamlin pulled a dirty move. Others thought it was a move reminiscent of the legendary Dale Earnhardt.
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— Devin Cook (@devincook021) May 7, 2023
That was a fantastic race. Great battle at the end. Seriously, how can anyone hate that. 👍
— Steve Paris (@StevieParis2) May 7, 2023
Some of y’all never watched Earnhardt race and it shows. It was a light tap, snowflakes. ❄️
— Jeremiah 🏆 (@AmfibiusProphet) May 7, 2023