|Joey Logano celebrates at Watkins Glen|
|Sarah Crabill/Getty Images|
Joey Logano reaffirmed his mastery of the road course at Watkins Glen International, but it took a three-wide restart late in Saturday's Zippo 200 for the driver of the No. 22 Team Penske Ford to get the job done.
After winning his fourth straight NASCAR Xfinity Series pole at the 2.45-mile track, Logano took teammate Brad Keselowski and Joe Gibbs Racing driver Ryan Preece three-wide into Turn 1 after a restart on lap 75 of 82.
Logano's move forced Keselowski wide and Logano cleared his teammate before the entry to Turn 2. But Keselowski wasn't finished. He hounded Logano relentlessly until Keselowski spun in Turn 1 with two laps left.
That gave Logano a comfortable margin, and he cruised to the finish line 3.362 seconds ahead of charging AJ Allmendinger, as Keselowski fell to 10th at the end. Allmendinger passed third-place finisher Justin Allgaier in the final corner to secure the runner-up spot.
"That was all I had," said Logano, who came to the green for the final restart with six-lap fresher tires than Keselowski. "He was definitely faster. I thought the tires would have been enough to be faster than him.
"I had a good restart and got in front of him, and he dogged me. These Xfinity cars draft quite a bit down these straightaways, and it's hard to pull away. It felt good to race each other really hard, so it's cool to see Penske cars doing that."
The victory was Logano's third in four races at WGI, his second in four starts this season and the 30th of his career, breaking a tie with Matt Kenseth for seventh on the all-time list.
Preece came home fourth, his fifth top 10 and fourth top five in six 2018 starts. Aric Almirola completed the top five.
|Joey Logano lead the field in the wet at Watkins Glen|
|Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images|
Logano won the race's first stage before a rainstorm forced a change to rain tires. Allmendinger showed his road racing superiority by pulling away to win the second stage before the sun came out and dried the track.
Allmendinger drew a one-lap penalty for sliding too far and pitting outside his stall during a fuel-only green-flag stop on Lap 52, but he fought back to finish second after two late cautions bunched the field.
"Just a dumb mistake on my part," Allmendinger said. "I was coming in for fuel there, and it was still a little bit damp on pit road… I rolled in and slid a little more than I expected and got the nose over the line, and they'd already started to refuel.
"I just knew that, once we got the yellow, I was going to have to start roughing people up an driving up through there as hard as I could."
Christopher Bell fell short in his attempt to match Sam Ard's series record of four straight victories. Bell recovered from a pass-through penalty (for crewmen over the wall too soon on a Lap 16 stop) and finished ninth.
But Bell holds the series lead by 22 points over Cole Custer, who finished sixth on Saturday. Daniel Hemric (16th) is third, 23 points back, and fourth-place Elliott Sadler trials by 26 points.
|1||1||22||Joey Logano||Snap On Ford||82||31||0||Running|
|2||4||23||AJ Allmendinger||ISM Connect/AfterShokz Chevrolet||82||11||0||Running|
|3||10||7||Justin Allgaier||BRANDT Chevrolet||82||0||50||Running|
|4||8||18||Ryan Preece||Craftsman Toyota||82||8||40||Running|
|5||9||98||Aric Almirola||Go Bowling Ford||82||0||0||Running|
|6||12||0||Cole Custer||Haas Automation Ford||82||0||31||Running|
|7||20||19||Brandon Jones||Toyota Service Centers/Mobil 1 Toyota||82||0||30||Running|
|8||19||16||Ryan Reed||Drive Down A1C Lilly Diabetes Ford||82||0||31||Running|
|9||11||20|| Christopher Bell
|10||2||12||Brad Keselowski||Wabash National Ford||82||26||0||Running|
|11||27||9|| Tyler Reddick
||Nationwide Children's Chevrolet||82||1||27||Running|
|12||13||1||Elliott Sadler||Textron Off Road Wildcat XX Chevrolet||82||0||25||Running|
|13||14||60|| Austin Cindric
||LTi Printing Ford||82||0||24||Running|
|14||15||51||Jeremy Clements||RepairableVehicles.com Chevrolet||82||1||27||Running|
|15||17||61|| Kaz Grala
||DMB Financial Ford||82||0||24||Running|
|16||5||21||Daniel Hemric||South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet||82||0||35||Running|
|17||25||5||Michael Annett||TMC Chevrolet||82||0||20||Running|
|18||7||11||Ryan Truex||Leaf Filter Chevrolet||82||0||24||Running|
|19||21||36|| Alex Labbe
||Larue/Cyclops Gear Chevrolet||82||4||18||Running|
|20||23||4||Ross Chastain||Buckle Up New York Chevrolet||82||0||20||Running|
|21||36||90||Brian Henderson||Friends of Jaclyn Foundation Chevrolet||82||0||16||Running|
|22||37||35||Joey Gase||Sparks Chevrolet||82||0||15||Running|
|23||32||0||Garrett Smithley||teamjdmotorsports.com Chevrolet||82||0||14||Running|
|24||39||76|| Spencer Boyd
||Grunt Style Chevrolet||81||0||13||Running|
|25||6||3||Austin Dillon||Bass Pro Shops/Cabela's Chevrolet||78||0||0||Running|
|26||28||39||Ryan Sieg||Midstate Chevrolet||77||0||11||Engine|
|27||3||42||Kyle Larson||Chevrolet Accessories Chevrolet||77||0||0||Engine|
|28||24||15||Mike Skeen||teamjdmotorsports.com Chevrolet||76||0||9||Running|
|29||35||40|| Chad Finchum
|30||22||8||Scott Heckert||JW Transport LLC Chevrolet||73||0||7||Running|
|31||29||17||Victor Gonzalez Jr||PMC Group Chevrolet||70||0||PE||Running|
|32||38||45|| Josh Bilicki
|33||34||52||David Starr||Extreme Kleaner Chevrolet||49||0||4||Suspension|
|34||26||38||JJ Yeley||RSS Racing Chevrolet||45||0||3||Brakes|
|35||40||1|| Vinnie Miller
|36||31||66||Timmy Hill||CrashClaimsR.Us/MBM Motorsports Dodge||27||0||1||Rear Gear|
|37||16||2||Matt Tifft||Tunity Chevrolet||26||0||1||Accident|
|38||18||24||Justin Haley||FOE Chevrolet||26||0||0||Accident|
|39||33||93||Jeff Green||RSS Racing Chevrolet||8||0||1||Brakes|
|40||30||78||Tommy Joe Martins||JW Transport LLC Chevrolet||3||0||1||Accident|