Denny Hamlin's team beat Jeff Burton's squad to claim victory in the NASCAR Pit Crew challenge on Wednesday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Besides Hamlin's three Sprint Cup Series wins this year, the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 11 group added yet another trophy after the seven-man pit crew team advanced all the way to the final where they beat Burton's No. 31 Richard Childress Racing crew – the defending champions – by 0.442sec.
Crews had to raise a car with the jack on both sides, perform front and rear tire changes on both sides plus refuel the car, all in separate stations, before running to push their actual cars for 40 yards to the finish line. Only teams in the top 24 in the Sprint Cup standings were eligible for the event.
Hamlin's team beat the No. 12 Penske group of Brad Keselowski in the second round, the No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports crew of Mark Martin in quarterfinals and then the No. 88 team that serve Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s car in the semifinals. All their stops from the second round onward were faultless and fast, earning them $70,650 in prize money.
"I was as nervous as I've ever been," said Hamlin about the event. "I wanted it so bad for these guys. I wanted them to enjoy their success. I always get all the credit when we win, and this night was about them and it showed how steady and good that they are."
Individual prizes were also awarded for the best on each position, with Hamlin's jack man, Mark Martin's gas man, Clint Bowyer's rear-tire changer and carrier and Kyle Busch's front-tire men being the best from all participating members in their specialties.
Both points leader Kevin Harvick's crew and reigning champion Jimmie Johnson's team were eliminated in the second round of the event.
Hamlin's team victory gives them the right to choose their pit stall first for Saturday's All Star race.