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Denny Hamlin Championship Chase: Racing Against History

Denny Hamlin Championship Chase: In a season filled with records and milestones, Denny Hamlin’s quest for a NASCAR Cup Series championship remained elusive. Despite clinching the all-time wins record among drivers without a title with his 51st career victory, Hamlin’s bid for the championship ended in the round of 8 in the playoffs.

His Bristol Motor Speedway win in September broke an all-time record, previously tied with Junior Johnson, making him the winningest driver without a championship. However, as Team Penske’s Ryan Blaney secured the title at Phoenix Raceway with only 10 career wins, it emphasized the growing contrast in championship outcomes.

The irony lies in the fact that all active full-time Cup Series drivers with over 10 wins are former champions—except for Hamlin. The trio of recent champions, Blaney (10 wins), Kyle Larson (16 wins), and Chase Elliott (11 wins), collectively holds 14 wins fewer than Hamlin. Despite Hamlin’s substantial career victories, the lack of a championship sets him apart in this exclusive list.

Denny Hamlin Championship Chase (1)

Among other high-performing drivers, Kyle Busch boasts 63 wins and two championships, while Brad Keselowski and Martin Truex Jr., with 35 and 34 victories, respectively, both secured titles with 15 career wins or less. Joey Logano, a two-time champion, has 32 wins, and Larson and Elliott continue to add to their win totals with 23 and 18, respectively.

The next non-champion on the wins list is William Byron, with 10 wins—41 behind Hamlin. Beyond him, active full-time drivers accumulate wins, but collectively, they only surpass Hamlin by a mere seven victories.

As Hamlin navigates his 18th year in pursuit of that elusive championship, the question lingers: Will 2024 be the year Hamlin claims the title, or will he retire as the all-time winningest non-champion in NASCAR Cup Series history? Regardless of the outcome, his impact on the sport is undeniable.

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Our Reader’s Queries

Has Denny Hamlin ever won a championship?

Despite having an impressive Cup résumé with 51 wins and three Daytona 500 trophies, Denny Hamlin has yet to secure a NASCAR Cup Series championship. He has finished in the top-5 in the standings for eight seasons, but this coveted title still eludes him.

Why is Chase Elliott not in the Championship?

Despite facing challenges this season, Chase Elliott managed to put together a solid performance in the Cup Series playoffs. While his injury and suspension for right-rear-hooking Denny Hamlin at Charlotte made it difficult for him to return to the track, he still managed to secure multiple top-5 finishes during the summer. Although he may not have been at his best, Elliott’s determination and skill allowed him to hold his own in the playoffs.

How many wins did Denny Hamlin have in 2023?

Denny Hamlin, with an impressive 11 podium finishes, secured victory in three races, came in second in four races, and landed in third place in another four races. His consistent performance throughout the season has earned him a well-deserved spot among the top contenders in the racing world.

How many wins did Denny Hamlin have in 2010?

With two consecutive victories, Hamlin’s tally for the season now stands at five out of 15 races. At Richmond, he was in complete control, leading for 251 out of 400 laps and securing his sixth win of the 2010 campaign.

Khushal Bhatia
Khushal Bhatia
Khushal Bhatia, a distinguished BA (Hons) English graduate from St. Stephen College (University of Delhi) and a holder of a Post Graduate Diploma in Journalism (English) from IIMC Delhi, is an accomplished journalist. Currently affiliated with, Khushal is an expert in covering a range of sports topics with a specialization in motorsports, particularly NASCAR. His insightful articles explore the nuances of the sporting world, providing readers with comprehensive analysis and the latest updates. With a commitment to unbiased reporting, Khushal's expertise and authoritative voice make him a reliable source for sports enthusiasts.


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