Race Weekend Central

NASCAR Mailbox: Denny Hamlin Is the Next Mark Martin

Denny Hamlin was so close to making the Championship 4 again. Hamlin has failed to make the Championship 4 the past two years after making it the previous three years. Hamlin’s career is mirroring Mark Martin‘s as the championship has alluded both drivers even with the accolades earned during their careers.

Brad Keselowski was involved in a wreck at Martinsville Speedway and went to the garage. Yet, he returned to the track. Frontstretch‘s Jared Haas explains why Keselowski was able to return to the track.

See also
Did You Notice?: What a NASCAR Cup Championship Would Mean To ...

Frontstretch‘s Haas answers this week’s questions on NASCAR Mailbox on Frontstretch‘s YouTube channel. Find out the answers in the video below.


About the author


Jared Haas joined the Frontstretch staff in May 2020. During his time at Frontstretch, Jared has grown the Frontstretch YouTube channel from less than 200 subscribers to well over 23,000 subscribers.

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Don’t EVER EVER EVER compare Mark Martin and Denny Hamlin. One (Mark) got screwed out of a real Championship and the other (Denny) screws himself out of a chance for a chumpionship.


Isn’t this week about the 4 drivers racing for the championship ! Not a choker.


Martin never not get screwed out of anything. I remember that 1990 series well, I was there for a number of those races.

Martin got caught with an illegal part at the second race of the year and was penalized 46 points. Even so, by Labor day he had a comfortable lead and most of the media had already crowned him the 90 champion. Martin went into stroker mode for the last 9 races, riding around collecting points, while Earnhardt never let up.

In the last 9 races Earnhardt had 3 wins, 7 top 4’s, and only one finish worse then 10th. Martin only manged one win and 4 top fives over the last 9 races, with three finishes of 10th or worse. Earnhardt won 9 races and lead 2500 laps in 90, Martin only won 3 races (including Richmond with the illegal car) and only lead about 450 laps. Martin didn’t lead even one lap over the last 4 races.

I’ve read all silly stories of how Martin would have won the title if he hadn’t been penalized, how NASCAR screwed him in favor of Earnhardt, etc, etc, etc. The car was illegal and he got caught. It was the second race of the year in a 29 race season and he lead the points for more then half the year. Martin didn’t get screwed, he blew it, gave the championship away, choked, I don’t care what you call it, but he didn’t lose the championship because of the points penalty.


He was screwed


Martin’s fans have wined for over 30 years about the penalty in 90, while completely ignoring the facts about the 1990 season. If Martin got screwed it’s because he screwed himself.

Martin took the points lead after the 12th race of the year at Sonoma and held it for 16 races into November. With 2 races to go he still held a 44 point lead over Earnhardt. All he had to do was finish 3rd in the last 2 races and he would have won the championship, no matter what Earnhardt did, but he couldn’t. Like it or not, you can’t blame a penalty in the second race of the year on losing the championship, when he led the points for more then half the year.

I know it’s a butt hurt for Martin’s fan, but the penalty didn’t cost him the 90 championship, his own inability too hold onto his big points lead did.

Last edited 7 months ago by gbvette

NASCAR said:

“It’s not illegal but we don’t like it.”

Even back then they were ahead of the Indiana Jones line “I’m making this up as I go!”

Steve Stryker

It was not “illegal”…it was okay per a technical bulletin if it was welded, they were pressed for time and bolted on. Bill France was laid up at home with a broken leg. Childress called him demanding he do something because Roush “cheated”….and his best friends just lost the title by 12 points 2 months earlier. Roush was on the bad side of NASCAR by week 2, because he was all bent out of shape about how they didn’t like the roof on the 6, but other stuff was getting through inspection with other teams. Had France been there, would have probably been a money fine and no points.

Oh and later that year, they let Earnhardt’s crew pit the car on the apron at Charlotte after all the wheels fell off on a pit stop. But hey, whatever, different rules for different teams.

Was one of the last few Good Ole Boys club moments thankfully.

Scott Long

Right. Denny is nothing to mark. Mark was and is still one of the greatest of all time

Ray kiker

Dennys name should never be in a sentence with mark marten


Mark has more class then Denny.


oh my gosh…….NEVER EVER compare hamlin to mark martin. personally, i think you need to apologize to mark martin for even thinking this. in my humble opinion hamlin isn’t even fit to wash mark martin’s motorhome.


100% agree!! And it’s not an opinion, it’s fact; Hamlin isn’t even fit to scrape dog poo off of Mark Martin’s shoes!

Bailey Dog

or even his underwear..

Bill B

Well they have one thing in common, a lot of wins and no championship to show for it.
That’s where the comparison ends. Mark was a clean racer, Denny has no problem pushing someone out of the way or riding them into the wall. Mark wasn’t a whiner, Denny whines non-stop. Mark practiced what he preached, Denny calls other drivers out for doing the same thing to him that he does to them. Mark had class, Denny had a lot of wins and no championship.


I guess one could say Denny really would be a CHUMPion!

Joe Hughes

Hack Hamlin never in his life was as clean a driver as mark Martin


Did somebody bump there head Denny will never be a mark martin.


Denny Hamlin”your no Mark Martin”.

Peyton Thompson

I couldn’t disagree more. I never saw Mark Martin be anything but professional and kind. Always professional and a good CLEAN and humble driver. Opposite of that narcissistic, egotistical and arrogant Denny Hamlin. Denny races dirty and believe rules don’t apply to him. He and “his list of drivers that I’m going to get” are a disgrace to the sport!!!




Denny will never be mark martin but he will also never be a champ


Is this a parody column? For heaven’s sakes there is NO comparison. Mark Martin was always a class act. Denny Hamlin is the complete opposite.

Bailey Dog

Mark was a CLASS act, DH is just an A$$-hat…


There is NO comparison between Hamlin and Martin. Martin had class!!

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