Crazy end to a Great weekend of NASCAR Races at LVMS.
Martin Truex, Jr. recorded his eight career victory and his first at LVMS. He's the first driver to win all three stages in a race under the new points system. Truex led 6 times for 150 laps and beat pole winner Brad Keselowski by 1.495 seconds.
"We definitely had our share of races where we've dominated and gave one away and it looked like today was going to be another one of those," said Truex. "I was out of control and Brad (Keselowski) was really good on the long run. I hate that he had problems, he was strong and we weren’t going to do anything with him, but then he lost the brakes or something. A little bit of a gift, but we have given some away, so it feels good to come out on the good end for once."
Truex and Keselowski set the pace by 239 of the 267 laps between them. Keselowski was in control of the lead for the final restart with nine laps to go but fell off the pace and faded back to fifth over the closing laps.
"I just had three-quarter speed," Keselwoski explained. "And when everybody is charging behind you that's gonna cause a wreck. I got out of the way the best I could. We had a great day. We ran up front and we led a lot of laps. We were the fastest car at the end an just didn't come together. That's part of how racing works."
Keselowski's finish was good enough to push him into the points lead by a single point over Kyle Larson. With the victory, Truex moved from 7th to 4th in points.
While Truex was celebrating his victory with the fans on the frontstretch, a brawl broke out on pit road as Kyle Busch and Joey Logano go at it. Logano gets pulled away while several members of his crew pounce on Busch. Busch was finally subdued and left the scene with a bloody gash above his right eye.
Kyle Larson - Finished 2nd - "What an awesome day for our Target Chevy team. Second in the first stage, third in the second stage and then finished second in the race. I can't say enough about my team. I'm so proud of them. Our race cars are amazing right now. We are going to hopefully, keep building on what we've got and keep challenging for wins and they will come."
Chase Elliott - Finished 3rd - "We had a really solid car all day. I felt like we were maybe just a tick off Brad (Keselowski) and the No. 78 (Martin Truex, Jr.) and just needed a little bit more. I'm going to have to get back and kind of think about what we needed and where we needed to be better at. Had a poor restart there at the end and kind of got behind, but got lucky to kind of end up where we did with what happened. I'm really proud of the way we have performed."
The on-track incident that resulted in Kyle Busch spinning out on the final lap spilled over onto pit road after the race when Busch went after Joey Logano.
The contact occurred when Busch and Logano were racing hard for position in the top five. Brad Keselowski’s ailing Ford only complicated matters.
"I was racing hard there at the end with our Pennzoil Ford," said Logano. "Kyle and I usually race really well together. He tried to pin me down into the corner underneath Brad (Keselowski) and we about crashed on entry. And then I was still trying to gather it up by the center and I was gonna spin out, so I’m trying to chase it up and he was there. It obviously wasn’t anything intentional."
Of course, it wasn’t so obvious to Busch.
"I got dumped," said the Las Vegas native. “He flat out just drove straight in the corner and wrecked me. That’s how Joey races. He’s going to get it.”
According to Logano, Busch wasn’t interested in discussion.
“There wasn’t much talking,” Logano admitted. “There was a lot of swinging. You see him coming. He’s wearing the same (bright yellow) color suit as me. I don’t run from conflict. You just talk about it, but he wasn’t in a talking mood. He was in a fighting mood, I guess.”
Busch got the short end of the confrontation when he ended up on the ground underneath a pile of Logano’s crew members and emerged from the scrum with a bloody face.
Logano finished the race 4th. Busch lost a lap early after a speeding penalty but made it up and was poised to record a solid top-five finish before the spin. Instead he leaves his home track with a 22nd place finish, which ironically matches the number on the side of the car driven by his newest arch enemy. (Story courtesy of LVMS)
Photo Journalist holding Credentials from MPG, PAPA & AARWBA, | Memberships (past & present): IKF, WKA, CIK, SKUSA, SEMA, PAPA, SAE | Licenses (past & present) IMSA, NASA, SCCA-PRO, FIA, NASCAR, EMRA, ASRA | Secretary: Kart Industry Council (KIC) | CEO: American Indoor Kart Racing Series | COO: Amateur Karting Association | Entrant / Driver: Pirelli World Challenge Racing Series. Member: LinkedIn. (Apologies for typos and errors in grammar, I was not an English major in school).
Edmund Jenks: Memberships - Motor Press Guild (MPG) Professional Journalist | AARWBA | PAPA | NMPA | ibnma - International Blogging & New Media Association - Founding Member | Pajamas Media (MAXINE) - Blog Roll, Citizen Journalist | NowPublic - Editor, Feature Page Manager (Motorsports, Tech & Biz) | EXAMINER - LA Conservative Examiner & LA Motor Culture Examiner | Blog: ... notes from The EDJE