Larson holds off Logano for truck win at Rockingham
Rockingham, NC (Sports Network) - Kyle Larson became a first-time race winner in the Camping World Truck Series with a dominating performance in Sunday's North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at Rockingham Speedway.
Larson led 187 of 205 laps but had to fend off a hard-charging Logano in the final laps for his maiden truck win in just his fifth start. The 20-year-old Elk Grove, Calif. native is a rookie in the Nationwide Series this year and won the 2012 championship in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East. He clinched his title in that regional touring series at Rockingham.
Logano, who finished fifth in Saturday night's 500-mile Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway, battled back from a one-lap deficit in the late going of this event. He had to pit unexpectedly for a loose wheel, but fresh tires allowed him to quickly get back on the lead lap, as he charge through the field.
The seventh and final caution for an accident involving Timothy Peters and Ryan Sieg set up a green-white-checkered finish. After the restart, Larson pulled away from the field but Logano caught up with him on the final lap. Larson beat Logano to the finish line by just 0.18 seconds.
"I was definitely worried when I could see (Logano) getting closer and closer before we got to the white (flag), but we got that caution with just a couple of laps to go," said Larson, who drove the No. 30 Chevrolet for Turner Scott Motorsports. "I'm usually not the best at restarts, so I was surprised I got that good of a restart."
Logano drove the No. 19 Ford for Brad Keselowski Racing. Keselowski, the defending Sprint Cup champion, and Logano are teammates at Penske Racing.
"I was ready for (Larson) to do something on the restart, but he didn't do what I expected him to do," Logano said. "I spun my tires. We just got beat, and it was my fault."
Brendan Gaughan finished third, while points leader Johnny Sauter took the fourth spot. Sauter had won at Daytona and Martinsville and was attempting to become the first driver in series history to score victories in the first three races. Chase Elliott, the 17-year-old son of 1988 NASCAR Cup champion Bill Elliott, completed the top-five.
Sauter now holds a 16-point lead over rookie Jeb Burton, who finished seventh after starting on the pole. Matt Crafton, who is Sauter's teammate at ThorSport Racing, is 20 points behind after his sixth-place run.
After the caution for Peter and Sieg's crash, Ron Hornaday Jr. hit the back of rookie Darrell Wallace Jr. and punted him into the outside wall. Hornaday had retaliated after Wallace bumped into him while the two were battling for position just before the yellow flag waved. NASCAR penalized Hornaday for aggressive driving.
"(Hornaday) just flat-out wrecked me," Wallace said. "It's unfortunate to come out here and have a veteran do that to a rookie in that situation."
Wallace ended up finishing 27th with a heavily damaged truck. Hornaday, who placed 15th, was summoned to the NASCAR hauler to discuss the incident with race officials.
"With just a few laps to go, (Wallace) just got into me heading into the corner, and I got into the fence a little bit," Hornaday said. "I didn't know the yellow (flag) was out, and I started racing along the back straightaway. He slowed up, and I ran into him. I turned him into the fence, and I feel like a total idiot. I don't race that way."
04/14 17:53:36 ET