DARLINGTON, SC - SEPTEMBER 03: Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 Sport Clips Haircuts Toyota, stands during the National Anthem before the NASCAR Cup Series Playoff Cook Out Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway in Darlington, South Carolina on Sep 3, 2023.
Photo by David Jensen/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Denny Hamlin Makes Final Decision on Future With Joe Gibbs Racing

NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin is staying put after signing an extension to stay with Joe Gibbs Racing for the foreseeable future.

After months and weeks of speculation, Denny Hamlin can finally focus on trying to capture the 2023 Cup Series Championship. The 50-time Cup race winner has finally reached an agreement with longtime owner Joe Gibbs to remain as the driver of the No. 11 Toyota.

After having plenty of conversations about his future, Hamlin confirmed that he was signing a new multi-year contract with Joe Gibbs Racing. He made the news official on this week's episode of his podcast "Actions Detrimental with Denny Hamlin."

He did so while having Gibbs as a guest on the show. Hamlin took some time to personally thank Gibbs for giving him the chance nearly 20 years ago to go Cup racing, and he said he is looking forward to many more years of success.

"The willingness for you to take a chance on me nearly 20 years ago, and then still here when I'm 42 years old, to want to continue this relationship for years to come, so thank you," Hamlin said.

Gibbs also expressed his gratitude for all of the success Hamlin has brought to his team and hopes they can continue to chase after wins and championships together for the rest of Hamlin's career.

"This really helps us, because it kind of solidifies where we are going for the next several years," Gibbs said.

Along with signing an extension with JGR, Hamlin also announced that 23XI Racing will keep its alliance with JGR and Toyota.

"23XI will continue its relationship with Toyota into the future," Hamlin said. "Nothing really changes. We're going to continue on the path that we've been on. ... This kind of solidifies all those deals as done."

So much for all those Ford rumors.

With all of the contract talk out of the way, perhaps Hamlin can put his full focus on running for this season's championship. He certainly will need to focus after troubles late in the Southern 500 ended his chance at his third win of the season.

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