Joey Logano Faster, Tougher, Brighter in Phoenixby Kyle Pokrefky March 14, 2015 0 comments
Photo credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images
AVONDALE, Ariz. — A 13-race winless streak in the NASCAR XFINITY Series for Joey Logano came to a close on Saturday afternoon as the Middletown, Conn. native scored a victory in the Axalta Faster. Tougher. Brighter. 200 at Phoenix International Raceway.
Logano led 176 of 200 laps on his way to the checkered flag for his 22nd career victory in the XFINITY Series and the first of the year for both himself and the defending owners championship-winning No. 22 Team Penske crew.
Nipping at Logano’s heels at the finish of the race was Matt Kenseth, who led 14 laps of his own on his way to a second-place finish. Following Logano and Kenseth to the finish line in the top-10 were Kevin Harvick, Austin Dillon, Erik Jones, Ty Dillon, Chase Elliott, Brendan Gaughan, Regan Smith, and Brian Scott.
“When I came across the line I said ‘finally’, it took a long time to get our next win,” Logano said. “We’ve been finishing second the last four races before this one – we were so close to winning one. Obviously, a lot of poles and things were going well we just needed always just a little bit more speed and it was awesome to get it today.
“Finally got Discount Tire in victory lane. I’ve been driving the Penske car for awhile and haven’t got that sponsor in victory lane yet, so that was special.
“I learned some things for tomorrow I think which is good. We got Greg a win, he’s done a great job so far in the races that we’ve worked together. We just unloaded yesterday with a lot of speed and we were able to fine tune it and make the right adjustments for today’s race and keep our track position [with] the right strategy calls and we were able to win it.”
Four caution flags flew in the 200-lap race with the first being for debris and the second for a solo accident that took Landon Cassill’s No. 01 JD Motorsports Chevrolet out of the race.
The third caution of the day was for fluid on the track while the fourth and final caution of the race came out for a spin by Elliott, who clinched last year’s XFINITY drivers championship in Phoenix last November, on Lap 140.
Dillon, who was involved in Elliott’s spin, departs Phoenix as the points leader by 16 points over Chris Buescher.
The XFINITY Series returns to action next Saturday at Auto Club Speedway in the Drive4Clots.com 300 – the fifth race of the 2015 season.
Top-10 Finishers of the Axalta Faster. Tougher. Brighter. 200
- 22 – Joey Logano(i) – Ford – Team Penske
- 20 – Matt Kenseth(i) – Toyota – Joe Gibbs Racing
- 88 – Kevin Harvick(i) – Chevrolet – JR Motorsports
- 33 – Austin Dillon(i) – Chevrolet – Richard Childress Racing
- 54 – Erik Jones(i) – Toyota – Joe Gibbs Racing
- 3 – Ty Dillon – Chevrolet – Richard Childress Racing
- 9 – Chase Elliott – Chevrolet – JR Motorsports
- 62 – Brendan Gaughan – Chevrolet – Richard Childress Racing
- 7 – Regan Smith – Chevrolet – JR Motorsports
- 2 – Brian Scott – Chevrolet – Richard Childress Racing
Top-10 in the Drivers Standings after Round 4 of 33
- 3 – Ty Dillon – Richard Childress Racing – 157 | Leader
- 60 – Chris Buescher – Roush Fenway Racing – 143 | -14
- 16 – Ryan Reed – Roush Fenway Racing – 135 | -22
- 9 – Chase Elliott – JR Motorsports – 132 | -25
- 6 – Darrell Wallace Jr.# – Ford – Roush Fenway Racing – 132 | -25
- 62 – Brendan Gaughan – Chevrolet – Richard Childress Racing – 122 | -35
- 7 – Regan Smith – Chevrolet – JR Motorsports – 121 | -36
- 1 – Elliott Sadler – Ford – Roush Fenway Racing – 114 | -43
- 44 – David Starr – Toyota – TriStar Motorsports – 106 | -51
- 18 – Daniel Suárez# – Toyota – Joe Gibbs Racing – 103 | -54
# = Rookie, (i) = Ineligible for NASCAR XFINITY Series points.
Follow Kyle Pokrefky on Twitter at @KPokrefky