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NASCAR

Mar 23 - 2020
Read Time 2 Min

Hamlin Drives to Victory in First Pro Invitational iRace

March 22, 2020, Denny Hamlin drive to victory in the first Pro Invitational race at the virtual Homestead-Miami Speedway.Hamlin Drives to Victory in First Pro Invitational iRace
In the first Pro Invitational iRacing event, Denny Hamlin scored the victory in an exciting last lap pass of Dale Earnhardt Jr. at the virtual Homestead-Miami Speedway.

“It's always fun when you win, but regardless, it was a great event,” said Hamlin. “For the community, the racing community, the NASCAR drivers to come together and put 20 something drivers on the race track with such short notice, everyone is buying up simulation rigs this week and last week getting ready for the event, and for it all to come together and have a great finish, I think it was definitely a success.”

Denny Hamlin
Hamlin was amongst the top racers most of the race – leading a total of 14 laps – but proved to make the right pit call when it mattered most, electing to take four tires at the final restart and drove from mid-pack to the lead on the final lap. Hamlin got alongside Earnhardt coming into turn one with Hamlin taking the high-side. He looked clear going into the final corners, but Earnhardt battled back. However, Hamlin was able to hold him off at the line by just 0.153 seconds.
March 22, 2020, Denny Hamlin and Dale Earnhardt Jr. battle for the win on the last lap of the Pro Invitational race at the virtual Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Timmy Hill drove a Toyota to a third-place finish, while Hamlin’s Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, Erik Jones, battled back from a 25th-place starting spot and a mid-race spin to finish 10th.

Hamlin made the announcement prior to the race that if he won, he would donate $5,000 to the NASCAR Foundation to help those impacted by COVID-19. The race sponsor, Dixie Vodka, also donated $10,000 while iRacing and Fox Sports matched Hamlin’s donation making the race not only an entertainment success for race fans, but also successful for the NASCAR Foundation to help many in need.

March 22, 2020, Erik Jones battled back from a spin to score a top-10 finish.
The iRace was well-received across multiple national channels with Hamlin completing interviews on SportsCenter and Good Morning America. The race also became the top trending topic during the race broadcast on FS1.