Las Vegas NASCAR Cup: Logano wins as caution shown on final lap

Las Vegas NASCAR Cup: Logano wins as caution shown on final lap

Joey Logano won the second round of the 2020 NASCAR Cup season at Las Vegas as a last-lap incident denied Matt DiBenedetto the opportunity to snatch the victory.

A caution was brought out just six laps before the chequered flag when Ross Chastain, filling in for Ryan Newman, spun the #6 Roush Fenway Ford.

All but seven cars came into the pits for fresh tyres for the sprint to the flag, with Logano leading William Byron, Ricky Stenhouse Jr, and DiBenedetto among the pack that stayed out when the race resumed with two laps remaining.

Logano held onto the race lead while DiBenedetto pushed past Stenhouse and Byron to take second, and was close behind the Team Penske Ford driver when Logano began the final lap.

Behind the leaders, a handful of mistakes in the crowded pack led to a multi-car accident, which involved Byron and long-time race leader Kyle Blaney and led to the caution being thrown as a number of drivers spun or ran wide to avoid other cars.

As Logano had already taken the white flag, the final lap was called and the race ended under caution.

He therefore took the win half a second ahead of DiBenedetto, who had spent most of the race in the bottom half of the top 10, and Stenhouse.

Austin Dillon and Bubba Wallace also benefitted from not pitting before the final restart.

Neither driver had featured towards the front of the field for much of the race, but found themselves sixth and seventh with just two laps remaining.

Both managed to avoid the drama at the start of the last lap to finish fourth and sixth, with Jimmie Johnson splitting the pair.

Chase Elliott won the first two stages, and the Hendrick Motorsports driver controlled the first half of the race.

Though Logano and Blaney briefly claimed the race lead early in each stage, Elliott was the fastest driver on track throughout the first two stages.

Throughout the first half of the race, he was kept under pressure from Martin Truex Jr, but things came undone for Truex in the final stage.

He was forced to come into the pits at the start of the final 107-lap stage as the wheel lugs had not been tightened during his previous stop.

He then suffered a puncture, dropping him towards the back of the field.

Elliott continued to fight at the front of the field, though the pitstop cycle had shuffled him back to eighth when a flat tyre sent him into a spin 47 laps before the finish.

Kyle Busch, who should have started on pole after Saturday qualifying was rained off, started the race from the back of the grid, along with Joe Gibbs Racing team-mate Denny Hamlin, due to unapproved body modifications.

Both made good progress through the field, with Busch briefly running inside the top 10 in the closing stages of the race. They took the chequered flag in 14th and 17th respectively.

Brad Keslowski picked up seventh, having benefitted from running an alternate pit strategy early in the race.

Kevin Harvick, Kyle Larson, and Ty Dillon completed the top 10.

Result

Pos Driver Team Car
1 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford
2 Matt DiBenedetto Wood Brothers Racing Ford
3 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet
4 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
5 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
6 Darrell Wallace Jr. Richard Petty Motorsports Chevrolet
7 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford
8 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
9 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
10 Ty Dillon Germain Racing Chevrolet
11 Ryan Blaney Team Penske Ford
12 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
13 Alex Bowman Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
14 Chris Buescher Roush Fenway Racing Ford
15 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
16 Corey LaJoie Go FAS Racing Ford
17 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
18 Tyler Reddick Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
19 Cole Custer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
20 Martin Truex Jr. Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
21 Aric Almirola Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
22 William Byron Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
23 Erik Jones Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
24 John Hunter Nemechek Front Row Motorsports Ford
25 Kurt Busch Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
26 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
27 Ross Chastain Roush Fenway Racing Ford
28 J.J. Yeley Rick Ware Racing Ford
29 Brennan Poole Premium Motorsports Chevrolet
30 Daniel Suarez Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota
31 Joey Gase Rick Ware Racing Ford
32 Quin Houff StarCom Racing Chevrolet
33 Christopher Bell Leavine Family Racing Toyota
34 Reed Sorenson Spire Motorsports Chevrolet
35 Garrett Smithley Petty Ware Racing Chevrolet
36 Michael McDowell Front Row Motorsports Ford
37 Ryan Preece JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet
38 Timmy Hill MBM Motorsports Toyota

Published at Mon, 24 Feb 2020 00:20:48 +0000

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