Joey Logano had the dominant car in the Stater Bros. 300 at Auto Club Speedway. But, on the green-white-checkered finish Greg Biffle nudged Logano up the track and back to fourth. Biffle took the white flag in the lead, but then couldn’t hold his car on the bottom, allowing second-place Kyle Busch inside to drag race down the backstretch.
Brad Keselowski dove to the inside to make it three-wide, but couldn’t make it stick. Busch and Biffle traded the lead a few times in turn 4, before Busch pulled away on the frontstretch for the win. Logano and Keselowski made contact, sending Logano spinning across the infield grass. Keselowski finished third; Logano finished fifth.
Top 5: Busch, Biffle, Keselowski, Carl Edwards, and Logano.
Steve Wallace, Kelly Bires, Brian Vickers, Justin Allgaier, and Brian Scott rounded out the top 10.
Notables: Mike Wallace (12th), Jason Leffler (14th), Scott Riggs (16th), Paul Menard (17th), Jason Keller (20th), David Reutimann (26th), Kenny Wallace (29th), Danica Patrick (31st), and Kevin Harvick (38th).
In order to fulfill my NASCAR-required* Danica Patrick coverage quota, Patrick started 36th, and quickly dropped to the back of the pack, being lapped within the first 20 laps. She was hit with two pit road speeding penalties, and was lapped again by lap 75. But, she accomplished her goal: to finish the race.
Maybe she didn’t finish sixth, like in her ARCA race, but she kept the fenders and wheels on it.
After the race, Logano said:
I got hit again by Biffle. Go figure. I don’t know what his deal is with me. I know we were racing hard at the end, but he could have done it a little cleaner … I always remember those things.
Interestingly enough, Logano didn’t seem to have any words for Keselowski, who caused him to spin coming to the checkers. In Keselowski’s defense, maybe he thought Denny Hamlin was piloting the No. 20 this race.
Anyhow, Biffle said:
I already had my nose inside him. We made a little contact and he went up the race track. I guess he’s not happy about that, but when you’ve got a guy beside you, you’ve got to give him some room.
*NASCAR doesn’t actually require Danica Patrick coverage.