Penske Racing driver Joey Logano slipped and slid around Bristol Motor Speedway to claim the inaugural Food City Dirt Race win at Bristol Motor Speedway Monday afternoon. With Denny Hamlin charging late in the going behind him, Logano survived a late race yellow which sent the race into overtime. On the final restart on lap 252, Logano held off not only Hamlin, but a fast Ricky Stenhouse Jr. to claim the win. Logano won by a slim margin of only .554 seconds ahead of Stenhouse and Hamlin.
Quote from the Winner!
Logano, fresh from the drivers seat, stated, “Man, it’s incredible! How about Bristol on dirt? This is an incredible, unbelievable race track — great job by everyone that prepped the track. Obviously, a lot of work over here the last few days (because of rain that forced postponement from Sunday). We did a lot of work in the dirt department here the last few week. Great car, obviously, to be able to execute the race that we did and get a win. I was getting nervous. There were so many first-time winners and different winners than there has typically been. I said, ‘We’ve got to get a win to make sure we get in the playoffs,’ so it’s amazing to get this Shell/Pennzoil Mustang into victory lane at Bristol. There’s nothing like winning at Bristol, but putting dirt on it and being the first to do it is really special.”
Following the top three on Monday were Daniel Suarez, who continued his impressive 2021 season with Trackhouse Racing by finishing in fourth. Ryan Newman used his dirt track expertise to finish in fifth, while William Byron finished in sixth. Tyler Reddick and Ryan Blaney finished in seventh and eighth, while Richard Petty Motorsports driver Erik Jones finished in ninth. Rounding out the top ten was the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series Champion Chase Elliott, who finished in tenth.
Two of the early favorites to claim the win Monday were both taken out of contention during a crash on lap 53. Christopher Bell, who was in second place at the time, spun his car while driving on the high line of the track. Running behind him was Kyle Larson, who had no where to go and slammed into Bell’s car. As the two slid down the track, they collected both Ross Chastain and Kevin Harvick. Both Larson and Harvick were able to continue, but Chastain and Bell were forced to retire. Larson would end up going two laps down, and finished the race five laps down in 29th.
What’s Next for the NASCAR Cup Series?
The next round of the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season will take place on the dirt at Martinsville Speedway in two weeks after having this Sunday off due to Easter. Fans can catch all of the short track racing action on Saturday night, April 10th at 7:30 p.m. ET on FOX, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
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