Joe Gibbs Racing announced late Sunday that Hamlin had been admitted and would stay overnight for observation. NASCAR officials refused to release the name of the hospital where Hamlin was taken, although typically drivers are taken from Auto Club Speedway to Loma Linda University Medical Center.

The driver's girlfriend, Jordan Fish, tweeted: "He's alert n awake, main concern is his back."

"Hamlin complained of lower back pain at the track's infield medical center and was transported to a local hospital for further evaluation," a JGR statement said. "Hamlin will remain at the hospital overnight for observation."

Hamlin was put on a stretcher immediately following the accident, which occurred as Hamlin and Joey Logano raced for the win going into the final turn of the Auto Club 400.

The accident was the second in two weeks between the former JGR teammates. At Bristol Motor Speedway a week earlier, Hamlin spun Logano as they battled for second.

After the race, Logano, who now drives for Penske Racing, went over to Hamlin's car and was pushed away by Hamlin's crew.

On Friday, Logano pledged that he would race Hamlin "the way he raced me."

Living up to that promise, Logano tried to hold the inside lane as they battled for the lead on the final lap and drifted up into Hamlin. Both drivers hit the outside wall while Kyle Busch went on to win the race.

While Logano was able to collect his car, Hamlin's slid into the inside wall and smashed it head-on, lifting his car up in the air. There is no SAFER Barrier in that area of the track.

"Denny Hamlin was not going to win that race," said Logano, before knowing Hamlin had been taken to the hospital.

"I wanted to win that race. I feel like I had the car to win the race. … It was just racing for the lead. I guess we're even now. He'll think twice before he does something next time."

Hamlin has a history of back problems, including a bulging disk and a torn disk that kept him out of a practice session last July at Daytona.

Last year, he said that surgery would be "years down the road' and treats his back problems — which he said are genetic — with therapy.

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