The William Byron and Denny Hamlin collision that occurred under caution on Sunday night at Texas Motor Speedway was overlooked by officials, according to NASCAR's Scott Miller. He added that the incident will be investigated this week.
NASCAR Senior Vice President of Competition Miller said, "When we were in the tower, we were paying attention to the actual cause of the caution up there and deploying our equipment."
We were unaware of the William Byron and Denny Hamlin thing. Denny went into the grass, and by the time the incident was replayed well enough to make any changes, we had returned to the green.
"However, I'm not sure that problem has been fully solved. When we return to work, we'll consider that.
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The investigation by NASCAR has not eliminated the possibility of penalties. On lap 268 of the race, Martin Truex Jr., who had a flat tyre, crashed in Turn 4, bringing out the caution. At the time, Truex was in front of the field. While NASCAR was preoccupied with Truex's collision, Byron struck Hamlin from behind, sending him flying over the frontstretch grass.
The two were in close proximity to one another off Turn 2 a few laps prior to the incident, which resulted in Byron hitting the wall. This incensed the Hendrick Motorsports driver. Hamlin claimed he tightened up coming out of the turn and let off the gas to avoid hitting the side of Byron, but there was no contact between him and Byron. Off Turn 4, the two were running second and third when Byron collided with Hamlin. Byron was rear-ended by Hamlin when he managed to restart his car. Hamlin later admitted that he had also attempted to spin Byron.
Due to his inability to sustain speed while the caution was in effect, NASCAR placed Hamlin in the middle of the pack. Byron received no punishment. Miller claimed that Byron's in-car camera would have aided authorities in taking immediate action. There likely would have been two options if we had been able to see it well enough to respond to it in real time, as we should have done, according to Miller. Hamlin would have been returned to his previous position in one scenario, while William would have started from the back in the other.