Denny Hamlin wins NASCAR Cup Series’ Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond after late caution flag

RICHMOND, VA. – Virginia native Denny Hamlin ran away in a green-white-checker shootout to win the NASCAR Cup Series Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond Raceway on Sunday night.

Denny Hamlin celebrates winning the Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond Raceway.
Peter Casey, USA TODAY Sports

Due to a green-white-checkered finish, the race extended seven laps past its scheduled 400-lap distance.

After Bubba Wallace brought out a caution by spinning Kyle Larson with two laps to go and Martin Truex Jr. seemingly headed to victory, the 16 lead-lap cars pitted with Hamlin emerging as the leader, followed by Joey Logano and Larson.

Hamlin won the Richmond 400 to score his 53rd career NASCAR Cup Series victory, his second of the season, and his fifth at Richmond. His margin of victory over second-place Joey Logano was .269 of a second.

There were five caution periods for a total of 54 laps. Twenty-two of the 36 drivers in the race finished on the lead lap.

Martin Truex Jr. remains the championship leader after Richmond with a 14-point advantage over second-place Kyle Larson.

Stage 1 Winner:  Kyle Larson of Hendrick Motorsports (Chevrolet)

Stage 2 Winner:  Martin Truex Jr., of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)

Stewart-Haas Race Finish:       

  • Josh Berry (Started 30th, Finished 11th / Running, completed 407 of 407 laps)
  • Noah Gragson (Started 17th, Finished 12th / Running, completed 407 of 407 laps)
  • Chase Briscoe (Started 32nd, Finished 18th / Running, completed 407 of 407 laps)  
  • Ryan Preece (Started 16th, Finished 28th / Running, completed 406 of 407 laps)

Stewart-Haas Points:

  • Chase Briscoe (18th with 150 points, 120 out of first)
  • Josh Berry (23rd with 114 points, 156 out of first)
  • Noah Gragson (30th with 84 points, 186 out of first)
  • Ryan Preece (31st with 84 points, 186 out of first)
Josh Berry

Berry earned his second top-15 finish of the season and his second top-15 finish in two career NASCAR Cup Series starts at Richmond. This was Berry’s best finish so far this year. His previous best was 12th, earned March 17 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway.

“It was a solid night. We had a really good car and a really good practice,’ said Josh Berry, driver of the No. 4 SUNNYD Ford Mustang Dark Horse. “We didn’t qualify like we should have, but we were able to come up through there and get some track position back. It was just little things. We lost a little track position and got stuck in the back half of the top 10, but, all in all, it was a really good night. We have a lot to be proud of. It was a good points night, and we’ll go to Martinsville.” 

Berry finished ninth in Stage 1, earning two bonus points, and second in Stage 2, earning nine more bonus points.

Berry led twice for two laps, increasing his laps led total at Richmond to 12.

Berry was the highest-finishing rookie.

Noah Gragson

Gragson earned his fourth top-15 of the season, and first top-15 in four career NASCAR Cup Series starts at Richmond.

We were just a little too disconnected. From the start of the race, compared to yesterday in practice, I felt like we had a really good car, but we kind of just lost it,” said Noah Gragson, driver of the No. 10 Superior Essex Ford Mustang Dark Horse. “I don’t know if it was going into nighttime if that was a difference, but I’m super proud of these Superior Essex guys. We kind of just maintained all day, started 17th and finished 12th, and never got a good handle on the car, but nobody quit. I’m just appreciative of the opportunity.

Gragson’s 12th-place result bettered his previous best finish at Richmond – 24th, earned in August 2022.

Chase Briscoe

“It wasn’t our best night, by any means. I felt like, by far, it was our worst race of the season,’ said  Chase Briscoe, driver of the No. 14 Ford Mustang Dark Horse. “We were able to run in the top 20, even though that’s not really our goal. We definitely just struggled all weekend. We could never get the balance how we wanted it to be. We could never get the front to turn, and then we just unhooked the back, so it was just kind of a frustrating weekend from getting it to do what we wanted it to do. It was just an up-and-down night for us. We definitely have a lot of work to do, which is a little head-scratching just because of how good we’ve been here in the past. We’ve always kind of been in the mix. We’ve got to go back and try to do our homework and come back better.”

Next Up:

The next event on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the Cook Out 400, which will be held on Sunday, April 7, at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. The race begins at 3 p.m. EDT and will be covered live by FS1 and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.