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Wreck opens door for Joey Logano

- jutter@charlotteobserver.com
Saturday, Oct. 10, 2009

FONTANA, Calif. – Revenge was sweet for Joey Logano, but apparently not enough for his dad.

Run into the wall by Greg Biffle early in Saturday’s Copart 300, Logano stayed just good enough to still be in the hunt when chaos erupted in the final 20 laps.

When the smoke cleared, and the cars of two former race leaders were taken to the garage, Logano came away with the unlikely victory at Auto Club Speedway. It’s his second consecutive Nationwide Series win and fifth of the season.

“I think this is the best way to get him back,” Logano said of Biffle in Victory Lane.

Apparently it was not enough for Logano’s father, Tom, who had his annual credential confiscated by NASCAR after confronting Biffle on pit road immediately after the race.

Even before Biffle had stopped his car, Tom Logano was gesturing toward him, witnesses said.

Father and son were upset over an incident on Lap 50 when Biffle's Ford slammed into Logano’s Toyota, putting it into the wall – after apparently proclaiming over his team radio he would do precisely that.

“I didn’t think we had a shot at it. We got some fresh tires on that last pit stop and I was wondering how they would hold up,” Joey Logano said.

“It was frustrating. I get mad in the race car a lot, but I’ve never been that mad in my life. You don’t want to get me mad. I just race harder.”

Logano’s path to victory was helped when Denny Hamlin and Biffle wrecked while racing for the lead with nine of the 150 laps remaining.

Hamlin was actually substituting for Kyle Busch, who has the flu and had gotten out of his car early in the race.

On the restart, Brad Keselowski spun his tires, which allowed Logano to get around him for the lead. He was able to hold off Brian Vickers over the final seven laps to win.

Carl Edwards finished third, Kevin Harvick fourth and Keselowski fifth.

Hamlin’s wreck allowed Edwards to close to within 155 points of Busch in the series standings.

“We were racing pretty hard there. (Keselowski) gave us a shot getting in (Turn) 3 and got low on us and got position,” Hamlin said.

“He started picking up a push and started coming into us and I was trying to carry it up off the corner trying to make sure I didn’t get clipped by him.

“All the while (Biffle) was up high and got a big run off the corner and we came up into him.”

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