Logano Wins in Richmond, filled with Fires and Short-tempers.

BmMf_VnIQAAbOmAJoey Logano took advantage of a three-car duel by sneaking below the trio to take the lead Saturday night, outrunning former champions Matt Kenseth, Jeff Gordon and Brad Keselowski to win at Richmond International Raceway.

Logano’s first career victory on the 0.75-mile oval came seemingly from nowhere after a restart with nine laps to go. He sat fourth and on the outside with Kenseth leading, Dale Earnhardt Jr. alongside in second and Gordon on the inside in third, in prime position to move underneath the leader and grab the victory.

Instead, when Gordon, Kenseth and Keselowski raced in a triangle jockeying for position, Logano went underneath all three with three laps to go and then held off Gordon for his fifth career NASCAR Sprint Cup victory.

”That’s the best drive I’ve ever had here. What a crazy finish,” Logano said.

He also joined Kevin Harvick as the only drivers with more than one victory this season.

Kyle Busch, never in contention all night, rose to finish third, followed by Keselowski and Kenseth.

Kenseth and Keselowski had words post-race, with the fuming Keselowski saying Kenseth ran him off the track.

”I had a shot at winning the race and he ran me off the track,” Keselowski said. ”It was just a mind-boggling move to me. … I thought it was uncalled for.”

Gordon said Kenseth was doing what he needed to do to hang on.

”I think Matt did what he thought he had to do to win,” Gordon said. ”He started making his car real wide. He probably didn’t make the guys behind him real happy.”

Kenseth had come from nowhere after lurking in the back of the top 10 all race long, suddenly charging through the field and passing Gordon to grab the lead with 38 laps to go. It was his first lead.

Gordon, who led 173 laps, and teammate Earnhardt both seemed poised to challenge at the end, but after the final restart, Team Penske teammates Logano and Keselowski became the ones to watch.

All night long, their cars had easily been the fastest on fresh rubber.

”All night long, I just had to let the 2 and the 22 go right by me because they were so fast” on fresh tires, Gordon said about Keselowski and Logano.

Signs of the wild ending may have come very early.

Clint Bowyer started third and hoped a return to one of his best tracks would allow him to put last September behind him. That was when Bowyer’s intentional spin late in the last race before the playoffs jumbled the finishing order, and the drivers who made the Chase, leading to a NASCAR investigation.

Instead of a clean run, Bowyer hit rookie pole-sitter Kyle Larson on the opening lap, sending Larson spinning. He also twice pitted under a green flag, right before a caution flag came out, and was battling Danica Patrick for 38th place when a fire in his engine ultimately caused him to park for the night.

RACE NOTES:
Average Speed: 93.369 MPH
Time of Race: 3 Hrs, 12 Mins, 47 Secs.
Margin of Victory: 0.946 Seconds
Lead Changes: 20 among 8 drivers
Cautions: 9 for 66 laps

Next Up: The teams return to their second superspeedway/restrictor plate race of the season with the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, May 4th. The race has an approximate starting time of 1:20 p.m. (ET) and television coverage of the event will be provided by FOX beginning with their 12:30 p.m. (ET) pre-race show.

Toyota Owners 400 Results:

Pos. Car # Driver # Laps Status Laps Led Points-Bonus Points
1 22 Joey Logano 400 Running 46 47-4
2 24 Jeff Gordon 400 Running 173 44-2
3 18 KyleBusch 400 Running 0 41
4 2 Brad Keselowski 400 Running 114 41-1
5 20 Matt Kenseth 400 Running 35 40-1
6 47 AJ Allmendinger 400 Running 0 38
7 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr 400 Running 7 38-1
8 31 Ryan Newman 400 Running 0 36
9 99 Carl Edwards 400 Running 0 35
10 78 Martin Truex Jr. 400 Running 0 34
11 4 Kevin Harvick 400 Running 23 34-1
12 55 Brian Vickers 400 Running 0 32
13 1 Jamie McMurray 400 Running 0 31
14 5 Kasey Kahne 400 Running 0 30
15 16 Greg Biffle 400 Running 0 29
16 42 Kyle Larson # 400 Running 0 28
17 43 Aric Almirola 400 Running 0 27
18 9 Marcos Ambrose 400 Running 0 26
19 13 Casey Mears 400 Running 0 25
20 38 David Gilliland 400 Running 0 24
21 51 Justin Allgaier # 400 Running 0 23
22 11 Denny Hamlin 400 Running 0 22
23 41 Kurt Busch 400 Running 0 21
24 27 Paul Menard 400 Running 0 20
25 14 Tony Stewart 399 Running 0 19
26 40 Landon Cassill 398 Running 1 0
27 3 Austin Dillon # 398 Running 0 17
28 23 Alex Bowman # 398 Running 0 16
29 35 David Reutimann 397 Running 0 15
30 34 David Ragan 396 Running 0 14
31 83 Ryan Truex # 396 Running 0 13
32 48 Jimmie Johnson 396 Running 0 12
33 7 Michael Annett # 396 Running 0 11
34 10 Danica Patrick 395 Running 0 10
35 33 David Stremme 395 Running 0 9
36 32 Travis Kvapil 394 Running 1 9-1
37 66 Joe Nemechek(i) 391 Running 0 0
38 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr 390 Running 0 6
39 98 Josh Wise 390 Running 0 5
40 30 J.J. Yeley(i) 380 Engine 0 0
41 26 Cole Whitt # 367 Running 0 3
42 36 Reed Sorenson 225 Electrical 0 2
43 15 Clint Bowyer 159 Suspension 0 1

# – Rookie, (i) Ineligible for driver points in this series

Top 16 Drivers in Points (Unofficial):

Pos. Car # Driver Points Behind Starts Wins Top 5s Top 10s DNF
1 24 Jeff Gordon 341 Leader 9 0 4 7 0
2 20 Matt Kenseth 336 -5 9 0 3 7 0
3 99 Carl Edwards 313 -28 9 1 2 5 0
4 18 KyleBusch 310 -31 9 1 3 5 0
5 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr 309 -32 9 1 5 6 1
6 22 Joey Logano 292 -49 9 2 5 5 1
7 2 Brad Keselowski 287 -54 9 1 4 4 0
8 48 Jimmie Johnson 282 -59 9 0 3 5 0
9 31 Ryan Newman 272 -69 9 0 0 4 0
10 55 Brian Vickers 256 -85 9 0 1 3 0
11 16 Greg Biffle 256 -85 9 0 1 3 0
12 3 Austin Dillon # 252 -89 9 0 0 1 0
13 42 Kyle Larson # 251 -90 9 0 2 4 1
14 11 Denny Hamlin 245 -96 9 0 1 2 0
15 14 Tony Stewart 243 -98 9 0 2 4 0
16 9 Marcos Ambrose 242 -99 9 0 2 2 0
Drivers outside the Top 16 with a win.
20 4 Kevin Harvick 220 -121 9 2 2 3 2
25 41 Kurt Busch 185 -156 9 1 2 2 3

# – Rookie

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