Joe Gibbs Racing on a roll at Dover

September 29, 2012 

jutter@charlotteobserver.com

It’s shaping up to be a big weekend for Joe Gibbs Racing at Dover International Speedway.

Already this weekend, JGR drivers Darrell Wallace Jr. and Denny Hamlin had won the poles for the NASCAR Nationwide and Sprint Cup races, respectively.

Saturday afternoon, teammate Joey Logano added a dominating victory in the One Main Financial 200, leading all but 16 of the 200 laps.

The win is Logano’s seventh in the Nationwide series this season – the most of any driver. It’s also the 16th of his career in 105 starts.

“I tell you what, the car in the spring may have been even better,” said Logano, who completed a season sweep of the Dover Nationwide races. “This No. 18 car is running for the owner’s championship, so this should definitely help today.”

The two drivers who appeared to have a chance of denying Logano the win – Justin Allgaier and Kasey Kahne – both experienced problems late in the race.

Allgaier, who led the first 13 laps, was forced to the garage late in the race with a mechanical problem.

Kahne, who looked like he might challenge Logano, momentarily lost power on the restart following the race’s final caution. He drifted back to 12th and eventually finished eighth.

“There was a little bit of cat-and-mouse play going on, sometimes (Kahne) would be fast and I wonder if he was saving his stuff or hoping there was a caution,” Logano said. “It went back and forth.”

Paul Menard finished second, Michael Annett was third, Elliott Sadler was fourth and Kyle Busch was fifth.

Sadler continues to lead the series standings, holding a nine-point advantage over Ricky Stenhouse Jr., who finished ninth.

“It was about track position. We started off way too loose and it took a couple (pit) stops to get it tightened up,” Menard said.

“I had a good restart on the last caution and Joey got a good start. He just took off for a couple laps and I was kind of tight before it kind of came to us. It was too little, too late.”

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