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NASCAR Cup: Joey Logano wins at Darlington

DARLINGTON, SOUTH CAROLINA – MAY 08: Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, celebrates in the Ruoff Mortgage victory lane after winning the NASCAR Cup Series Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway on May 08, 2022 in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)


Joey Logano claimed his first win of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season Sunday in the Goodyear 400 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway. Logano led a race-high 107 laps of the 293-lap race but took his race-winning lead with a bump to William Byron just before the white flag.

“(Joey Logano)’s just a moron,” Byron said. “He didn’t even make it a contest.”

Byron wound up 13th after getting into the wall.

“You’re not gonna put me in the wall and not get anything back. That’s how that works,” Logano said.

According to Byron, though, the initial contact was insignificant.

“We barely touched off of two,” Byron said “No reason for him to say, ‘Retaliation.’ That’s stupid. He does this stuff all the time.”

Tyler Reddick finished second, Justin Haley was third, and Kevin Harvick and Chase Elliott rounded out the top-five.

Byron took his lead from Logano on the final restart on lap 268.

Logano won the opening stage at lap 90. After losing the lead to Kyle Busch on lap 62, Logano retook the lead on lap 80. Busch also lost positions to Ross Chastain and Christopher Bell in the final 10 laps of the stage.

Logano started on the pole but lost the lead to Kyle Larson in turn four of the opening lap.

Logano took the lead by getting off pit road first during a lap-30 competition caution. 

Larson spun while racing Busch for second, bringing out the third yellow flag of the race on lap 55. By lap 120, Larson was in the garage with an engine issue after leading 30 laps.

“With these cars, you don’t want to lock the tires up because you’ll get a flat and it really tears your car up,” Larson said of whether or not his earlier spin caused the engine problem. “I definitely rolled backwards some. That was my concern with why we blew up, but they said that probably didn’t have anything to do with it. Bummer. Our No. 5 Chevrolet was super good today, so that’s promising. I feel like maybe we hit on something here this weekend. I hate that we’re not going to get the finish that we deserve, but I’m proud of my team for the car they brought today.”

Chastain won the 95-lap second stage that ended at lap 185. He took his stage-winning lead from Martin Truex Jr. on lap 166, one lap prior to the fifth caution of the race that came when Brad Keselowski wrecked with a flat tire and Busch was collected.

“I just blew a tire,” Keselowski said. “I’m pretty sure I ran over debris off of two. There had been debris there for about 25 laps, and I think I finally got it. I just blew a tire and went straight. That’s part of it.”

Chastain, though, wrecked while racing Denny Hamlin for the lead on the restart for the final stage.

“We had a super strong day for our No. 1 Coca-Cola Chevy Camaro,” Chastain said. “We were fighting the balance all day. We were racing with those guys for the lead. I just thought I could run the bottom, there, off of turn two and the exit of the patch. I just got loose on the transition and spun out. Aside from that, it was a perfect day on the track and on pit road. I’m proud of the effort, proud of the grip that our car had. We’ll come back here in the fall and give ourselves another shot.”

Logano dominated the first half of stage two before giving up the lead to pit during a cycle of green-flag stops on lap 136. When the cycle completed on lap 139, Truex was the new leader while Logano was back to fourth, also losing positions to Tyler Reddick and Chastain. Reddick, though, made unscheduled pit stop on lap 160 for a vibration.

Denny Hamlin started the race in the back after difficulty in qualifying Saturday resulted in an official start of 22nd and repairs to his car resulted in actually starting the race in the back. He raced into the top-10 by the end of stage one and into the top-five by the end of the second stage. He, then, got out of the pits first to lead the race early in the final 108-lap stage.

Hamlin lost the lead briefly to Logano after a 200-lap restart but was back up front by the time the final cycle of green-flag pit stops began before lap 230.

After pitting later in the cycle than many of his fellow competitors, Hamlin wound up eighth when the cycle completed at lap 250. Reddick was the new leader with Logano in second.

Hamlin, then, was among the drivers collected in a multi-car crash that began with a spin by his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Truex on a lap-261 restart. Just before the crash that involved nearly 10 cars, Logano beat Reddick off pit road to retake the lead.

Christopher Bell finished sixth, Michael McDowell was seventh, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. eighth, Austin Dillon ninth, and Daniel Suarez finished 10th.

Below, are the results of the Goodyear 400:

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Posted by on May 9, 2022. Filed under Breaking News,Cup Series,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.