Logano Nails Down Tight Kansas Nationwide Series Victory
Three-time Kentucky Speedway "Meijer 300" champion Joey Logano visited a NASCAR Nationwide Series Victory Lane for the first time since June 12 on Oct. 2 at Kansas Speedway.
Logano skated his No. 20 past Kyle Busch's No. 18 at the exit of Turn 2 after the final restart with two laps remaining with the help of a push from Brad Keselowski in the No. 12. Once out front for the fifth time with race's series track-record 21st lead change, Logano held point through the closing six laps and beat Keselowski across the finish line by .0315 of a second.
"He (Brad Keselowski) helped me out a lot, which is perfect because I pushed him to a couple of wins so it's nice for him to push me once, that's pretty cool. On the second-to-last restart, I was a little nervous. When I was on the bottom there the spotter yelled clear. I was like, 'I've got to clear him (Kyle Busch) and come up the racetrack before he gets to the outside of me, because he would have had me in (turns) three and four. I'm excited about it. It's good to be back in Victory Lane," said Logano, who started the race from the pole position for a series-leading sixth time this season.
The Joe Gibbs Racing talent earned his 11th top-five and 19th top-10 series finish of the season in his 20th start and broke out of his frustrating pattern of second-place finishes that grew to six on Sept. 25 at Dover International Speedway.
"It definitely gets frustrating, when you feel like you should have won a lot more races than what you have this season, but it also makes you want it a little bit more and makes it a little bit sweeter when you do win," he added.
Keselowski nailed down his 20th top-five and 23rd top-10 finish of the season and grew his championship lead to 374 points with six races remaining on the schedule.
"Our car was good in points. We just didn't have enough speed to race with the 18 and 20. We had some good strategy and we got in front of them, but we just didn't have quite enough to stay in front of them. I'm proud of our effort, we'll just keep digging," said Keselowski, who took his second second-place finish in his past three starts.
Busch closed out the race third with his 19th top-five and 21st top-10 finish of the season, Kevin Harvick crossed the finish line fourth with his 14th top-five and 21st top-10 finish this year and Martin Truex, Jr., placed fifth in his first series start of the season. Second-place championship contender Carl Edwards spun his No. 60 car into the Turn 2 wall on Lap 67 of 200 and recovered to finish 14th and outside of an event top 10 for the second time in his past five starts. He surrendered 54 points to Keselowski.
The series will visit Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., on Oct. 9. Race coverage will begin at 4:00 p.m., on ESPN2, Motor Racing Network radio and Sirius XM 128.
Story by Mike Schmaltz