Joe Gibbs Racing announced that Mark Martin will replace Denny Hamlin in the No. 11 FedEx Toyota Camry, as Hamlin recovers from an L1 compression fracture he suffered during his incident with Joey Logano on the last lap of the Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway.
JGR President JD Gibbs said:
We’ve been real fortunate to have never been in this situation with the need to find someone to fill in for an injured driver. A lot goes into a decision like this but we are really pleased to have someone of the character and caliber of Mark Martin to fill in while Denny is out. Obviously we’re not exactly sure how long that is going to take, but Mark’s career speaks for itself and our team knows it will have the opportunity to compete for a win every week.
Martin, who currently shares the No. 55 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota with Brian Vickers, will take over driving duties in the STP Gas Booster 400 at Martinsville Speedway.
I’m happy to have this opportunity to help out JGR, FedEx and Denny. Hopefully I can keep those guys up front and compete for wins while Denny heals up.
Vickers is expected to drive the No. 55 while Martin fills in for Hamlin.
Update: Martin will only fill in for Hamlin at Martinsville. He will return to the No. 55 in the NRA 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. Vickers will then drive the No. 11.
J D Gibbs said:
Obviously having to find someone to fill in for Denny is not an ideal situation to have to be in and when you start a process like this you obviously begin to look at the drivers that are not only available but also able to drive for your race team and manufacturer. We were a bit premature in determining Mark’s status past Martinsville however. We’re real happy to have the opportunity to get Brian in our Cup cars and with him driving Nationwide for us we think we have some continuity there that is beneficial.
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