Joey Logano grabs big win at Charlotte to start 2nd round of Chase

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Joey Logano dominated Sunday’s Bank of America 500, leading 227 of 334 laps to capture the checkered flag at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

It was Logano’s first career Sprint Cup win at the 1.5-mile track and his fourth of the season.

“You always want to win at Charlotte,” Logano told NBCSN. “It’s everyone’s home turf, everyone lives around here, the race shops are around here, so to be able to win here is a special thing to knock off the bucket list.”

Logano not only takes over the lead in the Sprint Cup standings with the win, he also has an automatic advancement berth to the third round of the Chase.

“It’s nice to get that pressure off and really allow yourself to recharge your batteries before the next round and not have your tongue hanging out just to get through this round,” Logano said. “This is a big weight off our shoulders as a team, and especially as a driver, and it feels really good and to be able to know we’re in the next round.”

Kevin Harvick finished second, followed by Martin Truex Jr., Denny Hamlin, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, Austin Dillon, Jeff Gordon, Brad Keselowski and Aric Almiroa rounding out the top 10.

But it was a bad day for a number of other drivers, including Matt Kenseth (finished 42nd), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (28th) and Kyle Busch (20th), who all had issues that resulted in mediocre to poor finishes, leaving them deep in the Chase standings.

MORE: Results, stats and winnings for the Bank of America 500

MORE: Sprint Cup driver points following Bank of America 500

How did Logano win: Once he got past Matt Kenseth on Lap 77, Logano’s car drove like it was on a rail. The only driver who seemed like he might have anything to challenge Logano was Kevin Harvick. But Harvick could never catch up and wound up finishing second. “We had such a fast car today, leading a ton of laps,” Logano said. “This Shell Pennzoil Ford was unstoppable.”

Who else had a good race: Looking like he did earlier this season, Martin Truex kept digging to wind up third. … The highest-finishing non-Chase driver was Austin Dillon, who had one of the best races of his Sprint Cup career with a seventh-place showing. … Aric Almirola continued his run of strong races, finishing 10th. … Clint Bowyer (11th) and Jamie McMurray (12th), who were both eliminated from the Chase after Dover, also had strong runs.

Who had a bad race: Dale Earnhardt Jr. made contact with Carl Edwards on Lap 73, stayed on the track, and then smacked the wall two laps later with a blown tire. Earnhardt again wrecked on Lap 190 when he hit fluid on the track. He finished 28th. … Matt Kenseth was having a great day until Lap 178, when he had contact with Ryan Newman and slammed the right side of his car into the wall. Kenseth, who led 73 laps early, had to return seven times to pit road for additional repairs. He wrecked yet again on Lap 241, was officially declared out and ultimately finished 42nd. … Kyle Larson was having one of his best runs of the season when he wrecked with Kyle Busch entering pit road on Lap 195. Both cars had moderate damage but were able to continue, even though they both had to come back onto pit road at least two times each to make further repairs. Larson was attempting to come on to pit road, while Busch decided to stay out, faking he was going to pit, and ran into Larson. Busch finished 20th, while Larson finished right behind in 21st. … Kasey Kahne twice hit the wall early in the race after apparent tire issues. He went to the garage after the second incident on Lap 62, his day over. Kahne finished 43rd.

Notable: Joey Logano passed the 1,000 laps led in a season mark Sunday for the first time in his career. And there’s still six races to left for him to add to that total. … Jimmie Johnson’s bad luck struck again. Johnson, who was eliminated from the Chase last week, was running third when he came onto pit road on Lap 267. His crew pushed him to the garage when Johnson suffered a broken oil pump, ending his day with a 39th place finish. … Denny Hamlin battled electrical issues for much of the race, but still finished fourth. … Brad Keselowski drove nearly the last 20 laps with a loose wheel, but still came away with a ninth-place finish. “It was a lot of work,” Keselowski said.

Quote of the day, No. 1: “You do the best you can every week. And if this is the best I can do, it’s amazing I have a job.” – Matt Kenseth after his rough day, including two wrecks that led to an eventual 42nd place finish. Kenseth is now last (12th) in the standings, 45 points behind series leader Joey Logano.

Quote of the day, No. 2: “I lost count how many times we hit (the wall) today. … It ain’t over, but it certainly didn’t help today and that’s not how we want to do it.” – Dale Earnhardt, who finished 28th, four laps down, and finds himself 11th in the standings, 32 points behind series leader Joey Logano.

What’s next: Sunday, Oct. 18 at 2:15 pm ET, Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kansas.

Follow @JerryBonkowski

Sioux Chief to sponsor ARCA Showdown, East Series to race at Nashville Fairgrounds

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ARCA announced Saturday that Sioux Chief Manufacturing will be the entitlement sponsor of its 10-race ARCA Menards Series Showdown in 2020.

Sioux Chief Manufacturing is a Missouri company that designs and manufactures rough plumbing products, parts, and accessories for residential, commercial, industrial and government applications

Sioux Chief has been involved in ARCA since 2015 as a race event sponsor and special awards program sponsor and sponsored ARCA’s former Short Track Challenge.

As part of the deal, a newly increased point fund, combined with race purses, owner plan, and contingency awards, will offer teams a chance to compete for a share of over $920,000 in posted awards throughout the series.

The Sioux Chief Showdown will bring together the best drivers from the ARCA Menards Series, the ARCA Menards Series East and ARCA Menards Series West, formerly known as the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Those events, held on oval tracks 1.25-miles in length and under and road courses, offer drivers who may not be able or eligible to run the full 20-race ARCA Menards Series schedule the opportunity to run for a championship. Combined with the overall ARCA Menards Series championship, and the East and West championships, drivers will have four separate championships to compete for in 2020.

The announcement was made at the Performance Racing Industry Trade Show in Indianapolis. Also present was promoter Bob Sargent of Track Enterprises, who announced that the ARCA Menards Series East would compete at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway on May 2.

The Tennessean reported this week that the Nashville Fairgrounds was negotiating with Sargent to promote at least three races at the short track in 2020. Sargent’s involvement in the track comes after Nashville’s Fair Board voted to terminate its agreement with Formosa Productions to run the track over outstanding debt.

The ARCA Menards Series has competed at the Fairgrounds the last five seasons. The ARCA Menards Series East, formerly known as the K&N Pro Series East, competed there from 2007-08.

GMS Racing reveals full-time driver-crew chief lineup, number assignments

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GMS Racing has announced its full-time driver-crew chief lineup for the 2020 Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series season and number assignments for its trucks:

– Chad Norris has been named crew chief for Brett Moffitt and the No. 23 Chevrolet team. Moffitt drove the No. 24 in his first season with the team. Norris has been with GMS Racing for two years and directed the effort that delivered the team its 2018 Xfinity Series win at Talladega.

– Chad Walter will lead Tyler Ankrum and the No. 26 team. 2020 will be Ankrum’s first season with GMS Racing. Walter served as an engineer for Ankrum this season at DGR-Crosley. Walter has five wins and 42 top fives in 208 Xfinity Series starts as crew chief.

– Kevin “Bono” Manion is paired with Zane Smith on the No. 21 Chevrolet. 2020 will be Smith’s first full-time Trucks season after competing part-time for JR Motorsports in the Xfinity Series. Manion has 24 wins as crew chief across all three national series since 2003. He led Martin Truex Jr. to his two Xfinity Series titles.

– Jeff Stankiewicz will remain as the crew chief for the No. 2 team piloted by Sheldon Creed.

Social Roundup: How NASCAR drivers are spending their offseason

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NASCAR’s Champion’s week is now behind us and we are firmly in the offseason.

Well, sort of.

The NASCAR world never really stops, which is evident simply due to the continued announcements for the 2020 season.

But with Joey Logano testing the Next Gen car at Phoenix earlier this week and Dale Earnhardt Jr. helping clean up North Wilkesboro Speedway for iRacing, it’s been anything but quiet.

Here’s a look at what else happened in the NASCAR community this week.

Someone needs to check in on Jimmie Johnson, he could be in his own version of Mr. Mom.

Chris Buescher is home again.

The 2015 Xfinity Series champion is back at Roush Fenway Racing for the 2020 Cup season and he’s got the firesuits and cars to prove it.

Brad Keselowski recently became father to a second daughter.

He’s now learning some important life lessons.

Former Front Row Motorsports driver Matt Tifft is now off the market after getting married to his fiance, Jordan. Now they’re on their honeymoon.

 

Matt DiBenedetto showed off one of the perks of being a Wood Brothers Racing employee.

Ryan Blaney and Bubba Wallace went somewhere warm to start their holiday.

Joey and Caitlin Gase welcome twin sons

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Joey Gase Twitter
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Xfinity Series driver Joey Gase and his wife Caitlin are now parents to twin boys

The babies were born on Wednesday. Their names are Jace and Carson.

More: Brad and Paige Keselowski welcome second daughter