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Sidebar Stories: Auto Club 400

Denny Hamlin Reportedly Being Kept Overnight

After being transported by helicopter from Auto Club Speedway following a last lap crash with former teammate Joey Logano, USA Today’s Jeff Gluck is reporting that Hamlin will be kept overnight at a local hospital in Fontana, California.

Hamlin was racing Logano for the lead when Logano slid up the racetrack and into Hamlin’s left rear. Hamlin slid down into the infield and hit an area of the wall with no SAFER Barrier that had a slight ramp up into the wall. While Hamlin did exit the car under his own power, he collapsed as soon as he stepped out and was taken to the Infield Care Center by ambulance. He was taken by helicopter to a local hospital, though the helicopter was for precautionary reasons because of traffic in the area.

While nothing has been released regarding the extent of Hamlin’s injuries, several of people in the industry, including girlfriend Jordan Fish, expressed some concern over his back issues.

Next week is an off-week for the series, which may give Hamlin some much needed recovery time if the injury turns out to be serious.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. Leading the Points

Lost in all the chaos between Logano and Hamlin was the fact that NASCAR’s Most Popular Driver was the points leader following Auto Club 400. Earnhardt Jr. was second in the race to Kyle Busch, his third top five finish in five races this season.

Earnhardt has been in the top three throughout all of 2013 this far, though he hasn’t led the points since August of last year.

Earnhardt currently holds a points lead of 12 points over last year’s champion Brad Keselowski. Jimmie Johnson, Greg Biffle, and Carl Edwards round out the top-5.

NASCAR Switches Final Running Order

Following the on-track chaos that was Fontana, the finishing order was revised by NASCAR. In the results that were first released, Johnson was scored sixth.

However, after further review, NASCAR decided to move Logano up to the third decision. Kurt Busch, who was originally scored as third, was dropped back to fifth.

The change was announced after Busch had already done his mandatory availability for top three finishers.

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