Lenox Industrial Tools 301 Race Review – Joey Logano Wins!

Lenox Industrial Tools 301 Race Review
by Virginia Vroom of Predictem.com

This past weekend, history was made as Joey Logano won his first Cup series win making him the youngest driver in history to win in that series. Although it was a rain shortened race, I don’t think Logano was complaining. He was just stoked that his strategy worked.

Logano’s philosophy? “I’d rather be lucky than good”. If you’ll remember correctly, no truer words were spoken when Jeff Gordon said that same thing at the rained out Pocono and several of the races he has won in that same situation. For Logano, his strategy was good enough to beat everyone else, so he should get some credit. He was the only one who banked on the rain and saved enough fuel to make it to that final red flag. Logano made a great comeback after he cut down a tire on lap 182. Crew chief Greg Zipadelli made a great call allowing Logano to get his lap back and by staying on the track, he maintained his position. Logistically, it worked out very well for Logano, but it wasn’t without effort, that’s for sure.


The final yellow came out on lap 267 with 6 caution laps that followed before the red and official checkers finally came out. NASCAR didn’t waste much time and called the race quickly after the storm showed up. Unfortunately, NASCAR, in my opinion, tends to call races a little too quickly. The problem that NASCAR runs into when they do that is someone is going to call their bluff and say it was a political move and NASCAR just wanted to see Logano win. Either way, I think that the officials need to try harder to fit the race in instead of throwing that red flag so quickly.

Jeff Gordon obviously had the best car and had awesome pit stops, but making that last stop under green and not risking his fuel mileage caused him to finish second to Logano. Gordon knows all too well how important strategy is with those green flag stops when rain is imminent. Too bad Logano took on such a hefty risk while everyone else came in.

Other notables during the race included Ryan Newman, who was in the same position as Logano, looking for a win but ran out of gas while gambling with the rain. On lap 175, Kyle Busch got blamed for an 8 car pile up that included Martin Truex Jr., Jeff Burton and Dale Earnhardt Jr. The funny thing is that everyone was blaming Busch, but from what I saw, it seemed like Truex hit Jr. on the restart and Truex backed down and Busch clipped his fender.

Honestly, I don’t think Busch tried to start anything at all. Quite frankly, it looks like it was just one of those racing incidents and Truex backed down and Busch was on his tail for the restart. Blame goes to Busch as usual, but take a look back at who spun his tiresthat’s where the problem originated. Blame really should be placed on Jr. for initiating that wreck.

Here’s a look at your top ten finishers from the rain shortened race:

1. Joey Logano
2. Jeff Gordon
3. Kurt Busch
4. David Reutimann
5. Tony Stewart
6. Brad Keselowski
7. Kyle Busch
8. Sam Hornish Jr.
9. Jimmie Johnson
10. Kasey Kahne

The finishes changed the points up just a bit. The separation between Stewart and Gordon is a mere 69 points right now. Here’s your current top 12 after Loudon:

1. Tony Stewart
2. Jeff Gordon
3. Jimmie Johnson
4. Kurt Busch
5. Carl Edwards
6. Denny Hamlin
7. Ryan Newman
8. Kyle Busch
9. Greg Biffle
10. Matt Kenseth
11. Mark Martin
12. Juan Montoya

With only 9 races left until the Chase, you can bet that the drivers are going to be getting more and more competitive as the weeks tick by. You can also assume that the points are going to get shaken up quite a bit. There are only 71 points separating positions 10 through 14, so no one is really safe at this point. We are headed to Daytona this weekend for the huge Fourth of July bash. It’s definitely going to be interesting to see how the points shake up after this race.