Darlington delivers as Logano wins with controversial bump and run

With two laps to go, Joey Logano used his bumper to move leader William Byron out of his way, take over the lead and cruise to his first win of the season in the Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway.

It was his first victory at Darlington and the 28th Cup Series win of his career.

Logano indicated that his move was payback for earlier contact while racing Byron.

“Yeah, you’re not going to put me in the wall and not get anything back,” he said. “That’s how that works. Man, super proud of the Shell-Pennzoil team, getting a victory here in Darlington. You know what it’s like. I’ve never won here in a Cup race before.”

“So proud of this race team, great execution all day long. I’ll tell you what, the coolest thing is getting this car into Victory Lane. This is the car where it all started for me back in ’95 in a quarter midget. Really, honestly, all the young kids racing out there right now, this could be you.”

The maneuver caused Byron to slide up the track into the outside wall resulting in a disappointing 13th place finish. Byron was understandably upset.

“We were really close off of 2, and I think it spooked him and got him tight, and he was right against the wall, and I got the lead,” he said. “He’s just an idiot. He does this stuff all the time. I’ve seen it with other guys.
“He drove in there 10 mph too fast, and with these Next-Gen cars, he slammed me so hard it knocked the whole right side off the car, and no way to make the corner.

“Yeah, he’s just a moron. He can’t win a race, so he does it that way. It was close racing on the restart. We were faster than him. Obviously, at the end the right rear started to go away, and, yeah, he didn’t even make it a contest.”

Justin Haley finished third, followed by Kevin Harvick. It was Harvick’s 13th top-10 at Darlington, a track record. Chase Elliott managed a fifth-place finish after starting the race at the back of the field in 34th place in a backup car.

Harrison Burton was the highest-finishing (14) rookie.

The ending wasn’t the only drama that fans saw as Darlington lived up to its reputation as the track Too Tough to Tame. There were nine cautions, 23 lead changes (among 13 drivers) and 13 cars out of the 36 that were entered did not finish the race.

Did not Finish:
• Martin Truex Jr, Toyota, accident
• Erik Jones, Chevrolet, accident
• Cole Custer, Ford, accident
• Bubba Wallace, Toyota, accident
• Kurt Busch, Toyota, accident
• Alex Bowman, Chevrolet, accident
• Ross Chastain, Chevrolet, accident
• Daniel Hemric, Chevrolet, engine
• BJ McLeod, Ford, brakes
• Kyle Busch, Toyota, accident
• Brad Keselowski, Ford, accident
• Corey Lajoie, Chevrolet, accident
• Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, engine

The post-race inspection was clear with no issues and the results are final. NASCAR is also taking the No. 2 Team Penske Ford of driver Austin Cindric and No. 31 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet of Justin Haley back to the NASCAR R&D Center.

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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.

Angela Campbell
Angela Campbell
A native of Charlotte, NC, Angela (Angie) was first introduced to racing by her father. An avid fan of NASCAR, she found a way to combine her love of racing with her passion for writing. Angie is also an award-winning member of the National Motorsports Press Association. Follow her on Twitter @angiecampbell_ for the latest NASCAR news and feature stories.

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