Denny Hamlin ready to move on after 'extreme letdown'


FORT WORTH, Texas -- Denny Hamlin is ready to get over last season with new crew chief Darian Grubb.

"Everyone knows our standards are set way high," Hamlin said. "Last year was an extreme letdown for our group."

Two seasons ago, Hamlin won eight races and finished second in the Sprint Cup standings. Last season, he won one race.

"We're not a ninth-place team, and I'm not a ninth-place driver," Hamlin said at the Gear Up for the Green Flag event at Texas Motor Speedway on Tuesday night.

Joe Gibbs Racing hired Grubb after letting former crew chief Mike Ford go in December. Hamlin said Grubb brought new energy to the No. 18 team.

"As much success as we had, it kind of ran its course," Hamlin said. "Everyone needed to get rejuvenated. It seemed like everyone was just going through the motions for the last couple years."

Grubb was the crew chief for Tony Stewart's Sprint Cup championship team last season.