Gibbs, Hamlin apologize for celebrating Daytona 500 win after Newman wreck

Ryan Newman injured during Daytona 500

Ryan Newman is in serious condition but his injuries are not life-threatening.

NASCAR legend Joe Gibbs apologized Monday night after his team celebrated Denny Hamlin’s victory at the Daytona 500 minutes after a scary wreck involving fellow driver Ryan Newman.

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Newman, 42, was rushed to the hospital after his car flipped over near the finish line at the Daytona International Speedway. The longtime driver was treated at Halifax Medical Center and was in “serious condition” as of late Monday night, according to NASCAR, though his injuries were not considered life-threatening.

Hamlin and other members of Joe Gibbs Racing drew widespread criticism on social media after they were seen celebrating their victory. After the race, Gibbs said his team was unaware of the wreck’s severity.

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“I apologize to everybody, but we really didn’t know,” Gibbs said after the race, according to the New York Post. “We got in the winner’s circle and that’s when people told us later on in the winner’s circle.”

Social media users ripped Hamlin after he did doughnuts to celebrate his victory. Hamlin won the Daytona 500 for the second straight year.

Like Gibbs, Hamlin struck an apologetic tone after he became aware of Newman’s condition.

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“First a [sic] foremost I want to give well wishes and prayers to @RyanJNewman. I had absolutely NO IDEA of the severity of the crash until I got to victory lane,” Hamlin wrote on Twitter. “There’s very little communication after the finish and I had already unhooked my radio.”

Traditionally run on Sundays, the 2020 Daytona 500 was postponed until Monday afternoon due to rain. The race ended in dramatic fashion, with multiple late wrecks ahead of the finish.

Hamlin won a champion’s share of a $23.6 million purse.

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