Race Weekend Central

Joey Logano Scores First Win of 2016 in Ford’s Backyard

Looking for a win to join teammate Brad Keselowski in the Chase, Joey Logano finished a complete weekend at Michigan International Speedway with a Coors Light Pole Award and a victory in Sunday’s Firekeepers Casino 400.

Logano led the way for much of the day, pacing the field for 139 of the race’s 200 laps en-route to the victory. The Team Penske driver beat runner-up Chase Elliott to the checkered flag by .889 seconds to earn his second career victory at Michigan, and his 15th win overall.

“First off, I didn’t win. We won as a team” Logano said. “It was an amazing team effort from Friday or when we unloaded with the rules package… Everybody started working on the car, (we were) able to to put the thing on the pole to start the race and stay up in the top two the whole race.”

Elliott was forced to settle for another near-victory after leading 35 laps. The rookie lost the lead on a mid-race restart, when contact with Martin Truex, Jr. sent the rookie shooting up the track and outside of the top five.

“I just did something dumb. You can’t do dumb stuff and win these races. Completely my fault,” said Elliott.

Kyle Larson ended the day in third, with Keselowski and Kevin Harvick rounding out the top five. Carl Edwards, Tony Stewart, Austin Dillon, Jamie McMurray and Kurt Busch completed the top 10.

Logano’s victory marked two separate, giving Roush-Yates Engines it’s 100th premier series victory, and giving Team Penske its 50th NASCAR victory since moving to Ford prior to the 2013 season.

The first test of a new lower-downforce package from NASCAR ended early for some of the sport’s best stars. Kyle Busch ended his day in 40th after blowing a motor on lap 52. A.J. Allmendinger and Dale Earnhardt, Jr., finished their afternoons in 38th and 39th, respectively, after a crash with Chris Buescher on lap 61. Denny Hamlin‘s day ended with a 33rd-place result after he spun into the inside frontstretch wall on lap 188, forcing the day’s final yellow.

In all, nine cautions fell on the day, totaling 46 of the race’s 200 laps. There were 14 lead changes, with eight different drivers leading the way throughout the afternoon.

The Sprint Cup Series has next weekend off. The series will return to action on June 26, when they head to Sonoma Raceway for the Toyota – Save Mart 350.

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