Joey Logano wins WWTR Cup race after an overtime battle with Kyle Busch

Joey Logano wins WWTR Cup race after an overtime battle with Kyle Busch

Joey Logano defeated Kyle Busch in an overtime fight in front of a raucous crowd at the World Wide Technology Raceway.

After Kevin Harvick’s Ford slammed into the Turn 3 wall on lap 236 of 240 in Sunday’s Enjoy Illinois 300 due to a brake rotor failure, Busch chose the outside lane as the leader. Logano was on the inside of the track, beside Busch, with teammate Ryan Blaney behind him.

Logano and Busch traded the lead after the overtime restart, with Blaney giving Logano’s No. 22 Team Penske Ford a lucky shove, until Busch washed up the track in Turns 3 and 4 on the white-flagged lap.

Logano was able to win by 0.655 seconds, continuing his trend of winning first races in the NASCAR Cup Series. Logano also won the debut race at the Bristol Motor Speedway Dirt Track last year.

“Thanks for coming out, guys,” Logano said, acknowledging the sellout crowd. “I hope you enjoyed that race. It doesn’t get much better than that.”

“Racing for the lead like that with Kyle… one of the best… It was a lot of fun crossing each other back and forth… I knew it was coming. I did it to him; I knew he was going to do it to me. We crossed back and forth there a couple of times…”

“What a great car, though. Really fast. I kind of messed up in qualifying and [crew chief] Paul [Wolfe] made a great call putting two tires on [on the No. 22 Team Penske Ford’s final pit stop].”

“Blaney did a great job with the push down into [Turn] 1 which kept me close, at least, and being able to make the move. Good racing there.”

Logano’s win was his second of the season and his 29th overall. Behind Logano and Kyle Bush, Kurt Busch finished third, with Ryan Blaney fourth and Aric Almirola fifth. Meanwhile,  Kyle Busch’s car, which excelled on extended runs, did not fare well in overtime.

“Our car just took too long to come in,” Busch said. “Better on the long run; better up top. Top is not good to fire off on, but great job by the Snickers guys.”

“Again, we stayed in the running all day long and fought hard and thought maybe we could but that was it.”

As exciting as the overtime action was, the subplot featuring Chastain and his two major victims, Denny Hamlin and Chase Elliott, took the majority of the attention as the race progressed.

Chastain slammed into Turn 1 behind Hamlin on lap 64, sending the No. 11 Toyota up the track and into the wall, and eliminating Hamlin’s chances of a solid finish. Hamlin then ran Chastain down to the apron on the backstretch to convey his dissatisfaction.

On lap 101, Elliott’s No. 9 Camaro was spun into the inside barrier off Turn 4 after contact from Chastain’s Chevrolet. On the restart, Elliott exacted some vengeance by rubbing Chastain’s Chevy and moving it up the track.

Elliott eventually finished 21st, 13 places ahead of Hamlin, who finished 11 laps down. Chastain didn’t hold back when it came to accepting responsibility for the chaos he created on the track.

“It was terrible driving,” said Chastain, who finished eighth. “It’s one thing to do it once, but I just kept driving into guys. At this level, I’m supposed to be better than that…”

“I owe half the field an apology, and words aren’t going to fix it, so I’ll have to pay for it on the track and almost did today, and I deserve everything they do,” he added. “I can’t believe I continue to make this many mistakes and overdrive the corners and drive into guys.”

Hamlin seemed to indicate that racing karma still had to play out.

“It’s good that he takes responsibility, but ultimately it ruined our day,” Hamlin said. “I think we were kind of racing hard there for a while on the inside.”

“He kept trying to slide up in front of us and wasn’t able to, because I wasn’t willing to just back off and let him slide up in front.”

“It didn’t take long after he tucked in behind us that he wrecked us,” he added. “The unfortunate part is that it didn’t look like he got too shy after that, because I think he got the No. 9 after that one.”

“We all have to learn the hard way and we’ve all had it come back around on us and it’ll be no different.”

Martin Truex Jr. was sixth, followed by Erik Jones, Chastain, Christopher Bell, and AJ Allmendinger, who won the Xfinity Series race at Portland International Raceway on Saturday after flying in from St. Louis for the Cup event and starting from the back of the pack with no prior laps on the track.

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