Denny Hamlin Agrees ‘Heel of the Sport’ Ross Chastain Could Dethrone Rowdy Kyle Busch

Being labeled as the “Wrecking Ball” of NASCAR, Ross Chastain just can’t stop drawing controversy. Last Sunday at Darlington Speedway, race leaders Ross Chastain and Martin Truex Jr made contact in turns 3 and 4. As a result, Truex Jr was thrown onto the apron while Chastain hit the wall. Although both drivers suffered damage, the on-track altercation between Chastain and Kyle Larson once again put Chastain in the spotlight. And like everyone else, Actions Detrimental host Denny Hamlin discussed the incidents on his podcast.

However, even though Hamlin doesn’t really like Chastain, he and his co-host Jared Allen tried to provide an objective and unique angle to Chastain’s antics on the track. Explaining that few drivers don’t give him space on the track because of their history with him, Hamlin admitted that Chastain is one of the drivers the sport needs right now. Something that many would not have expected from him.


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Denny Hamlin explains why NASCAR needs Ross Chastain

During the conversation, Denny Hamlin co-host Jared Allen explained why he didn’t want Chastain to change his driving style. He said, “I mean, I really hope Ross doesn’t change the way he races. Because I think what’s going on right now is phenomenal. Overall.”

And surprisingly accepting his co-host’s take on the Trackhouse Racing driver’s racing style, Hamlin said:

“It’s great for the script. There is no doubt. We talk about it. That’s what NASCAR needs, right? Those types of scenarios…you need someone to ruffle some feathers once in a while. You think it would be this guy this week, this guy next week. It’s just kind of an ebb and flow. Male! He is a magnet for that.

Discussing Hamlin’s perspective on Ross and the impact he is having on the sport, Allen added, “Yeah, I think he should just keep running like an ab***h and embrace the personality. Because the sport really doesn’t have that anymore.

WATCH THIS STORY: Ross Chastain issues 5-word warning to Kyle Busch as NASCAR Media is accused of ‘stirring the pot’ amid Daniel Suarez Feud

Did Chastain dethrone Kyle Busch?

Additionally, Jared Allen talked about how some drivers get booed at most pre-race driver introductions. However, he stressed that these boos had nothing to do with incidents on the track. Citing how two-time Cup Series winner Kyle Busch was once the most hated driver, Allen added that Busch now gets far fewer boos since his move from the #18 car. He added,

“You would have agreed that of all the best drivers in the sport, Ross is currently the biggest heel in the sport. Maybe not now for all the fans…and I think the sport needs that. And I think Kyle doesn’t is more that… that’s what I’m getting at. He was kind of in my opinion.


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However, explaining the difference between Chastain and Busch, Hamlin said:

“Kyle Busch is one of the most respectful drivers on the circuit. He’s like the Jimmie Johnson type guy… he kicks a** and wins races. And he really doesn’t make a lot of contacts. He just had the black hat because of his personality, I think off the race track.

Although Hamlin didn’t deny that Chastain, is currently the sport’s heel – the “bad boy” who breaks the rules, he went on to explain how Busch’s off-track persona earned him the hate of fans.


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Who do you think is wearing the black hat in NASCAR in the 2023 season? Let us know in the comments below.

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