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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Logano outduels Busch to win inaugural race

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Busch had taken management of the race, however a late warning from a wreck involving Kevin Harvick despatched Sunday’s race right into a two-lap extra time and allowed Logano an opportunity to assault the Joe Gibbs Toyota driver.

The 2018 Cup champion lined up alongside Busch on the restart and acquired an enormous push from Penske Ford team-mate Ryan Blaney which allowed him to shortly transfer into the lead.

Busch then used a crossover transfer to get again in entrance of Logano as the 2 almost touched, however acquired unfastened within the course of as Logano dived beneath him and again into the lead.

Logano took the checkered flag 0.665 seconds forward of Busch to earn his second points-paying win of the 2022 season – having gained the non-championship Conflict race within the LA Coliseum and Darlington’s Goodyear 400.

“It doesn’t get a lot better than that. Racing for the lead like that with Kyle was a variety of enjoyable, crossing one another backwards and forwards,” mentioned Logano after securing the twenty eighth win of his profession.

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“I knew it was coming. If I did it to him, I knew he would do it to me.

“We crossed backwards and forwards there a pair instances within the final lap. It’s good to get a couple of wins on the season right here and begin accumulating these playoff factors.

Logano mentioned he hoped Blaney would line up behind him on the late restarts so the 2 might work collectively.

“He did a very good team-mate transfer there after which having the ability to push me and provides Crew Penske an opportunity to win the race,” he mentioned. “It was a variety of enjoyable to race right here, and looking out ahead to coming again.”

Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing, Snickers Toyota Camry

Photograph by: Nigel Kinrade / NKP / Motorsport Images

Logano is now the fourth driver with a number of wins this season, becoming a member of Ross Chastain, William Byron and Denny Hamlin.

Kurt Busch ended up third, Blaney fourth and Aric Almirola rounded out the top-five.

Blaney had completed second to fellow Penske driver Austin Cindric in Stage 1. The Cup rookie took the lead from poleman Chase Briscoe when the Stewart-Haas Ford driver had a left-rear tyre go down and was compelled right into a green-flag pit cease that put him a lap down – though he stayed out and took a wave-around within the break between Levels 1 and a pair of. 

Following the restart, Blaney took the lead from Cindric, however the race was shortly paused 9 laps later when Chastain punted Denny Hamlin into the wall. The JGR driver misplaced three laps to repairs.

Kyle Busch stayed out and inherited the lead the primary time within the race, with Logano second and Blaney third – till the 28-year-old had a left-rear puncture, spun and tagged the Flip 2 wall which introduced out a warning. 

One other warning adopted quickly after when Chastain tried a three-wide transfer for place on lap 102 that despatched Chase Elliott for a spin and likewise collected Bubba Wallace.

Wallace then spun in Flip 3 after contact from Ricky Stenhouse Jr to position the race below warning.

A number of drivers elected to pit, however Kurt Busch stayed out and inherited a lead he’d maintain to the top of the stage from Martin Truex Jr and Kyle Busch.

Truex stayed out to guide in the beginning of Stage 3 forward of Kyle Busch and Almirola, however the order was scrambled once more when Tyler Reddick spun off Flip 2 to deliver out a warning on lap 183.

Kurt Busch, 23XI Racing, Monster Energy Toyota Camry

Kurt Busch, 23XI Racing, Monster Vitality Toyota Camry

Photograph by: Jasen Vinlove / NKP / Motorsport Images

A two-tyre cease for Erik Jones meant he took the lead on the restart, adopted by Kyle Busch, Logano and Hendrick Chevrolet team-mates Alex Bowman and Kyle Larson. Almirola, who lined up sixth, was the primary automotive that took 4 new tyres.

Kyle Busch powered to the lead on the restart, earlier than one other warning ensuing from a spin for Stenhouse.

With 32 laps remaining, Logano acquired round Kyle Busch on the within to take the lead for the primary time within the race. However quickly after one other warning, following contact between Cole Custer and Todd Gilliland, Busch acquired previous Logano to reclaim the lead.

With 4 laps remaining, Harvick wrecked in Flip 3 – blaming a blown brake rotor – to deliver out a warning and ship the race right into a two-lap extra time that allowed Logano to battle again and finally declare the win.

NASCAR Cup Gateway race outcomes (245 laps)

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