Driver Denny Hamlin looks out from his car at the end of practice for Sunday's NASCAR Sylvania 300 auto race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011, in Loudon, N.H. (AP Photo/Mary Schwalm)
By JENNA FRYER
AP Auto Racing Writer
Denny Hamlin suffered a compression fracture in his lower back during Sunday's last-lap crash at Fontana, Calif.
Joe Gibbs Racing disclosed the injury Monday and said Hamlin was expected to be released soon from a Southern California hospital to return home. He has what is called an L1 compression fracture; essentially, the first vertebra in the lumbar section of his spine collapsed.
There was no immediate word on how long his recovery would take.
Hamlin was hurt during a crash with Joey Logano at the end of Sunday's race. He complained of lower back pain afterward.