Denny Hamlin went from breakdown to breakthrough on Sunday at Michigan International Speedway.
How else can you describe Hamlin's season to date? Last season, he won nearly one-fourth of the races on the Sprint Cup schedule – eight, to be exact.
Heading into Michigan Hamlin had yet to reach victory lane in the first 14 events of the 2011 campaign. But finally, on his 15th try, he got it right.
Now the question is where does he go from here? I'll tell you the answer: Hamlin is now poised to become the most dangerous drivers on the Cup circuit between now and the end of the season.
When I say dangerous, I mean that in a good way – for him, but not for his opponents. With the exception of five-time defending Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson, there is no better momentum driver in the sport today than Hamlin. Once he gets started winning, it's like having a bad habit: he just can't stop.
Why it took him 15 races, nearly one-half of the season, to take a checkered flag first is kind of baffling. Hamlin drives for one of the best teams in the sport in Joe Gibbs Racing. He has one of the best crew chiefs in the business in Mike Ford. His pit crew won the Sprint Pit Crew Challenge last month for the second year in a row.
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