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Logano remains hot in Nationwide with Michigan win

Brooklyn, MI (Sports Network) - Joey Logano held off a furious challenge from James Buescher after a restart in the closing laps to win Saturday's Alliance Truck Parts 250 Nationwide Series race at the newly paved Michigan International Speedway.

An accident involving Jamie Dick and Josh Richards occurred with less than 10 laps remaining. NASCAR had to briefly stop the race after Richards' car erupted into flames and dropped fluid on the track.

Logano led the way for the final restart with four laps to go, but Buescher challenged him for the top position. Buescher attempted to pass Logano during the final lap but could not pull it off.

"I thought I was going to get Joey on that last lap," Buescher said. "I peeked to the inside, and when I got down to the flatter part of the banking, the car just got loose."

Logano crossed the finish line 0.2 seconds ahead of Buescher for his fifth Nationwide win this season and the 14th of his career.

"I knew what (Buescher) was doing the whole time, laying back there and making that run on the last lap," Logano said. "I knew he was going to slide it down in (turn) one, and I felt as long as I had position on him, I could pin him down enough to get a big lead coming off the corner. He did exactly what I thought he was going to do, and I was able to work my game plan and come out ahead enough to win the race."

Four of Logano's Nationwide wins this year have come in his last five starts. He also claimed his second career Sprint Cup Series victory last Sunday at Pocono.

"I've had a lot of confidence in myself lately and knowing what I can with a race car," he said. "I feel like I'm feeding my crew chiefs the best information, and they're doing the best job they can do to give me the best race cars."

Logano had very little time to celebrate his latest win, as he had to return to the track moments after the Nationwide race to participate in an additional Sprint Cup practice session. Goodyear made a tire change for Sunday's 400-mile race at Michigan. A tougher left-side tire will be used on the cars after teams had tires that were blistering during Friday's practice sessions.

Kurt Busch, who returned to NASCAR competition this weekend after serving a one-week suspension for violating his probation, finished third. Rookies Cole Whitt and Austin Dillon, the pole sitter, rounded out the top-five.

When Busch was asked during his post-race news conference what it was like to be back in the race car after his week off, he simply replied, "It was great to drive the car."

Earlier in the day, the top-20 drivers in Nationwide qualifying at Michigan had speeds faster than the previous track record of 186.548 mph, set by Greg Biffle in 2007. This two-mile track received a new coat of asphalt during the off-season.

Dillon moved to within eight points of leader Elliott Sadler, who finished 11th.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. dropped to third in points (-27) following another poor finish. Stenhouse, the defending Nationwide champion, endured a mechanical problem midway through the race and ended up with a 25th-place run. He finished 26th last month at Charlotte and 32nd two weeks ago at Dover.

"I am glad we are out of Michigan and going somewhere else," Stenhouse said. "I never thought I would look forward to a road course, but we do now."

The Nationwide Series will run its first road-course race of the season next weekend at Road America in Elkhart Lake, WI.

06/16 22:30:28 ET


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