Nobody had stronger comments regarding Clint Bowyer's penalty than Denny Hamlin, and he was strongly in NASCAR's corner.
Listen to the news conference or read selected comments below:
Denny Hamlin(12 minutes, 32 seconds)
"Our cars did have to go through twice and I'm just not sure whether it was, the front or the back, so I can't be 100 percent correct. Those cars get extremely, extremely hot and when they do they either settle down or they settle high. That's what that grace period is for and they let you go back through again to make sure because that is something that is an issue when the cars get hot. Our car came back and it was correct, but it wasn't built incorrect and that's one thing that their car was: built incorrectly."
"You can talk about how small the thing was off and you can really try to say that 60 thousandths didn't help him perform any better – that is a crock. Let me tell you something, that helps a lot. I know when we gain five points of downforce our car runs a ton better. NASCAR has been very, very lenient, I feel like, on this car and they've given those guys chances. It's not Richmond.
I think that they should just be happy that they're in the Chase at this point. They were warned and they were warned before Richmond. Everyone in the garage knows that. They're the ones who wanted to press the issue and get all they could to make sure they got in the Chase They got in it and then they were busted. They kept going with it."
"The more they reel the other teams in, the better off our team's going to be. It's going to affect the 29, the 31 and the 33. I think the only difference is the 33 won the race so he went to the tech center. It's just one of those things where I think our team is very strong and we do it, I feel like, the right way. Sometimes that makes to where our performance is behind at times, but you know what, we're going to be 'green' all the time."
"There has to be a point where it's black and white. It's no longer gray. If NASCAR let them get away with this 60 thousandths of an inch, then when do you stop, when do you break it and say, 'Now we have to penalize'? There has to be a point in which they say, 'This is it, this is the tolerance, if you go past it, you're in trouble.'
"If they let him go, then they're just going to open up the whole field to let them do whatever they want. That's why some teams choose to get closer to that line than others – because there are things that happen out on the race track. There are variables that happen during the race that could make you be wrong, but you're taking that risk.
"If you're going to go out on the racetrack and take the risk of, 'I can't afford to get one bump or my car's going to be illegal,' that's a risk that ain't worth taking. That's why we don't do it with our organization."