Kenseth: Logano didn’t race for win ‘the way a man should’

17 Comments

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Joe Gibbs, the man who brought Joey Logano to the Sprint Cup Series, hoped he could be the driver to replace Tony Stewart there and later cast Logano off when Matt Kenseth became available and sponsorship couldn’t be found for Logano, pursed his lips as he pondered Logano spinning Kenseth out of the lead late in Sunday’s race at Kansas Speedway.

“I’ve got no comment other than everybody saw what happened,’’ said Gibbs, a God-fearing man prone to find the positive in nearly every situation.

Kenseth, whose emotion rarely is seen – except seemingly with Team Penske drivers – was direct when asked if he felt Logano intentionally wrecked him out of the lead on Lap 263 of the 269-lap race, which was extended by a green-white-checkered finish.

“Absolutely, 100 percent,’’ Kenseth said without hesitation.

Logano said he didn’t intentionally turn Kenseth.

“It’s hard racing,’’ Logano said. “With 15 to go, I … had to lift and not wreck both us. I got put in the same situation in the frontstretch. We both went for the same piece of real estate. We ran each other hard. He ran me hard, and I ran him hard back. It’s unfortunate things happen.’’

Kenseth needed this win. He finished 42nd last weekend at Charlotte, putting him in a situation where he likely won’t advance to the third round and continue his title quest based on points alone.

With his title hopes thinning, Kenseth stood next to his car on pit road as Logano celebrated in victory lane. The last time Kenseth had a run-in with a Penske driver in this round of the Chase was with Brad Keselowski last year at Charlotte, leading to Kenseth putting Keselowski in a headlock between haulers in the garage.

A calm Kenseth was asked what he would say to Logano about Sunday’s incident when they talked.

“I won’t talk to Joey,’’ Kenseth said. “I don’t have anything to talk to him about. You make decisions every day. You make decisions every minute behind the wheel. To me, strategically, that doesn’t seem like a great decision for him. But it’s the one he made and that’s how he wanted to win. I’m one of the only guys that I think hadn’t been in it with Joey, and I’ve always raced him with a ton of respect.’’

Logano said wasn’t going to lift after being blocked by Kenseth earlier.

“He just plain wrecked me,’’ Kenseth said. “He cries on his radio a lot, I guess, about blocking or moving around, but I mean, man you’re leading the race, you can pick whatever lane you want. It’s not like he was alongside of me. To wreck somebody for being in a lane that you wanted to be in seems to be kind of risky and not very smart. That was the decision he made.

“The race track is 80 or 100 feet wide down there and I was in front of him. He just chose to spin me out because he wanted to be in the top groove instead of going left and trying to race me for the win the way a man should do it really.”

 

Jimmie Johnson to start in the rear after gear change

Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images
Leave a comment

INDIANAPOLIS – Jimmie Johnson‘s bid for a record-tying fifth Brickyard 400 will have to begin at the back of the 40-car field.

Johnson qualified fourth Saturday but stated on Twitter that he’ll have to go to the rear of the field because they had to change the rear gear.

Although track position is pivotal at Indianapolis Motor Speedway because passing is difficult, optimists can view Johnson’s woes as a good sign. He has scored two of his three wins this season – Texas and Dover – after starting in the rear.

Also starting at the rear today is Cole Whitt (rear gear change) and Joey Gase (engine change). Whitt qualified 34th. Gase qualified 38th.

Today’s race is on NBC. Coverage begins at 2 p.m. ET with Countdown to Green.

 

 and on Facebook

Today’s Cup race at Indianapolis: Start time, weather, TV/radio info

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The NASCAR Cup Series takes part in the 24th annual Brickyard 400 today at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

It marks one year since Kyle Busch earned his last Cup win, when he claimed his second Brickyard 400 in a row. Busch starts from the pole for the second year in a row.

Here’s all the important info you need ahead of the race, which airs on NBC.

(All times are Eastern)

START: The command to start engines will be given at 2:32 p.m. Green flag is set for 2:44 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is scheduled for 160 laps (400 miles) around the 2.5-mile speedway.

COMPETITION CAUTION: Lap 20

STAGES: Stage 1 ends on Lap 50. Stage 2 ends on Lap 100.

PRERACE SCHEDULE: The Cup garage opens at 9 a.m. The driver/crew chief meeting is at 12:30 p.m. Driver introductions are at 1:55 p.m.

NATIONAL ANTHEM: Carly Pearce will perform the Anthem at 2:26 p.m.

TV/RADIO: NBC will broadcast the race. Coverage begins at 2 p.m. with Countdown to Green. Indianapolis Motor Speedway Radio Network will broadcast on radio and the Performance Racing Network at 1:30 p.m. SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the IMSRN/PRN broadcast.

FORECAST: The wunderground.com site predicts 89 degrees at race time with a 15 percent chance of rain at the start of the race.

LAST YEAR: Kyle Busch started from the pole and led 149 of the race’s 170 total laps. It was his second win in a row in the race. Matt Kenseth finished second, Jimmie Johnson finished third.

STARTING LINEUP: Click here for the full starting lineup.

Get a humorous look at life in the pits in, what else, ‘The Pits’ on NBC livestream

Leave a comment

Life in the pits can sometimes, well … really be the pits.

But it can also be a hilarious look at life in NASCAR, as well.

That’s the premise behind “The Pits,” a three-part “mockumentary-style series” that spoofs the life of the fictitious SONIC pit crew in NASCAR.

“The Pits” debuts Sunday on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app. After each 2-3 minute episode airs, replays will be available on NBCSports.com and also the NASCAR on NBC Facebook page.

The first episode airs during this Sunday’s live stream of the Brickyard 400, which will be televised on NBC.

Episode 1 follows pit pro Rita, who falls for tire specialist Max, but Max’s only affection is for SONIC Pretzel Dogs.

The other two episodes of The Pits will livestream Saturday night, August 19, during the night race at Bristol Motor Speedway, and during the Sunday, October 15 race at Talladega Superspeedway.

“The Pits” is produced for NBC Sports Group and SONIC Drive-In by The Kicker, with shareable content running across NBC Sports Digital assets.

Starting lineup for 24th annual Brickyard 400

3 Comments

Kyle Busch will lead the Brickyard 400 to the green flag Sunday for the second year in a row.

He earned his fourth pole of the year and is seeking his first Cup win since the 2016 Brickyard 400.

Following Busch in the starting lineup is Kevin Harvick, Jamie McMurray, Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin.

Hamlin is the only driver in the top five who hasn’t won at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Click here for the full starting lineup.