Nextel Cup All-Star Gets Beat By a 16-Year-Old at Iowa by Penny Aicardi
Logano and Harvick Fight Fierce Battle for Grand National Victory
Joey Logano (L) and Kevin Harvick (R) talk about their race at iowa after its conclusion.  (NASCAR / Denny Stremple Photos)
More than 24,000 fans, the largest crowd in Iowa Speedway history, watched Joe Gibbs Racing’s Joey Logano duel it out with NASCAR Nextel Cup driver and All-Star Challenge winner Kevin Harvick for 200 laps. But it was Logano, a 16-year-old kid who just got his license to drive on the street, that came out the victor in the NASCAR Grand National Division’s Featherlite Coaches 200 at Iowa Speedway Sunday afternoon.
“It was a tough race for me to win,” said Logano.  “We ran hard the whole race. I thought at the beginning of the race he was messing with me. I didn’t think I had a shot, but we took on four tires and we came back through the field. I caught up to him with about 30 laps to go and kind of saved my stuff a little bit there, and I had an opportunity to pass him.  I couldn’t ask for anything more. This is the biggest win of my life.”

The win, his third victory in only four starts in the Grand National Division, followed a disappointing run at Elko Speedway in Minnesota just two nights before. Logano got tangled up with another car there with five laps to go and had to settle with a 19th place finish.

“I thought after Elko it wasn’t good. I wrecked and Sean [Caisse] won, but today it was reversed so we were able to rebound,” said Logano. “It was pretty cool.”

Harvick won the pole, but Logano was right there with him and started on the outside front row. From the drop of the green, the Featherlite Coaches 200 was all Harvick and Logano. The two swapped the lead 15 times before Logano took over for good at lap 194.
“Joey did a heck of a job and took care of his car. He did what he had to do to win,” said Harvick. “He got clear of me and I missed all the way down the straightaway so he kind of beat me up pretty good there.”

Harvick got about an hour-and-a-half of sleep after his win in Charlotte before arriving at Iowa Speedway at 7 a.m.

“I got here early this morning and got straight in the car after the drivers meeting. We went out and won the pole and it was race time. It’s been a busy day.”
Logano took the lead on a restart using the outside lane to drive by.

“I got a good start,” Logano said. “I definitely would rather start second than first, and we beat him out of the first corner on the high side. It worked as planned that’s for sure. I drove it in there, I heard him on and off the gas, I was on and off the gas, we were both sideways.”

Harvick admitted an engine problem left him with little to challenge Logano with.

“We were in trouble from lap 20 because the motor was on seven cylinders,” he said. “I think its just a huge credit to the racetrack because I had to overdrive getting into the corner. I had to not use the brake and use the banking to really still race and still be competitive. I hated it that we had to struggle.”
Logano (#10) runs side by side with Harvick at Iowa.
Logano added, “My spotter told me (Kevin’s) motor was cutting out a little bit going around the corners sometimes, and that’s when I thought he was messing me with in the beginning of the race.  I’d get up next to him and I thought he was just letting off the gas, but I guess his motor was cutting off. I guess it helped me a little bit, but those last two laps we were running pretty hard.”

The only time the duo gave up the lead was following a round of pit stops at lap 101. A majority of the field had pitted on lap 81 after Harvick faked them out as they approached pit road. Both Harvick and Logano took on four tires and fuel. West Series driver Justin Loftin took hold of the reigns when they pitted, and swapped the lead with Mike Duncan before Harvick maneuvered his way back to the front by lap 136.

Ten caution periods slowed the event including one at lap 113 when 2006 Toyota All-Star Showdown winner Matt Kobyluck spun going into turn one. Kobyluck went into a slow spin before dropping down to the bottom of the track where he ran into defending Busch East Series Champion Mike Olsen. Kobyluck had to be towed off the track prematurely ending his day.

Sean Caisse, Elko Speedway’s winner, also wrecked a racecar in the event after hitting the wall for a second and final time at lap 97. Earlier in the race, Caisse had hit the wall in turn four when a right front tire blew without warning.

“It finished the car off. It’s just really unfortunate, but you know what, points-wise, it wasn’t that bad. It’s East vs. West so things are a little different on how they award points. We’re still in second and not that far away from Joey (Logano). It could have been a lot worse.”
Jesus Hernandez, a development driver for Ginn Racing currently under NASCAR’s diversity program, finished a solid third after starting from the 23rd position.

“We knew we had a fast car for the long run it’s just we had to try and save as much as we could. It worked out there in the end on the last restart where we were able to gain a couple of positions and hang on to them,” he said. “This track is a lot of fun to run, and I think I picked up on it fairly quickly. “We’re definitely building on a win, and before long we should be able to run up there with Joey (Logano).”

(Start position in parentheses)

1. (2) Joey Logano, Middletown, Conn., Chevrolet, 200 laps, 80.686 mph, $14,300.
2. (1) Kevin Harvick, Bakersfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $9,500.
3. (23) Jesus Hernandez, Fresno, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $5,000.
4. (37) Johnny Borneman, Ramona, Calif., Ford, 200, $5,945.
5. (3) Mike Duncan, Bakersfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $4,445.
6. (17) Justin Lofton, Westmorland, Calif., Ford, 200, $3,350.
7. (12) Brett Thompson, Jerome, Idaho, Chevrolet, 200, $3,945.
8. (7) Jeff Anton, Russell, Mass, Chevrolet, 200, $3,345.
9. (18) Eric Richardson, Bakersfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $3,445.
10. (31) Tim McCreadie, Watertown, N.Y., Chevrolet, 200, $2,000.
11. (33) Ryan Foster, Anderson, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $2,200.
12. (11) John Salemi, Nashua, N.H., Chevrolet, 200, $2,000.
13. (19) David Mayhew, Atascadero, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $1,975.
14. (27) Jonathan Smith, Beacon Falls, Conn., Chevrolet, 200, $2,695.
15. (39) Eric Hardin, Anahiem, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $1,925.
16. (36) Rogelio Lopez, Mexico City, Mexico, Chevrolet, 200, $1,900.
17. (34) Daryl Harr, St Albert, AB, Chevrolet, 200, $1,875.
18. (32) Jeffrey Earnhardt, Mooresville, N.C., Chevrolet, 200, $2,095.
19. (8) Brian Ickler, San Diego, Calif., Chevrolet, 200, $2,420.
20. (24) Mike David, Modesto, Calif., Ford, 199, $2,995.
21. (42) John Freeman, Huntersville, N.C., Chevrolet, 199, $2,785.
22. (35) Jason Bowles, Ontario, Calif., Ford, 199, $1,775.
23. (28) Jim Inglebright, Fairfield, Calif., Chevrolet, 198, $2,345.
24. (40) Dion Ciccarelli, Severn, Md., Chevrolet, 198, $2,320.
25. (9) Andrew Myers, Newport Beach, Calif., Chevrolet, 197, $2,295.
26. (20) Michelle Theriault, Bristol, Conn., Chevrolet, 197, $1,325.
27. (41) Alex Haase, Las Vegas, Nev., Chevrolet, 197, $2,245.
28. (10) Jamie Hayes, Norlina, N.C., Chevrolet, 196, $1,300.
29. (29) Mike Olsen, North Haverhill, N.H., Chevrolet, 192, $2,845.
30. (13) Ruben Pardo, Mexico City, Mexico, Dodge, 175, $1,650.
31. (22) Scott Lynch, Burley, Idaho, Dodge, 175, accident, $1,650.
32. (25) Pierre Bourque, Ottawa, Ont., Dodge, 171, accident, $2,245.
33. (14) Jeff Barkshire, Auburn, Wash., Dodge, 166, $1,650.
34. (5) Marc Davis, Mitchelville, Md., Chevrolet, 165, vibration, $1,300.
35. (26) Richard Jarvis, Jr., Ocean City, Md., Chevrolet, 150, vibration, $1,300.
36. (21) Matt Kobyluck, Uncasville, Conn., Chevrolet, 113, accident, $2,245.
37. (6) Sean Caisse, Pelham, N.H., Chevrolet, 94, accident, $2,245.
38. (16) Eric Holmes, Escalon, Calif., Chevrolet, 76, engine, $1,300.
39. (38) Bryon Chew, Mattituck, N.Y., Chevrolet, 51, $2,245.
40. (4) Peyton Sellers, Danville, Va., Chevrolet, 51, engine, $1,300.
41. (30) Tim Schendel, Sparta, Wis., Dodge, 9, accident, $1,300.
42. (15) John Wes Townley, Watkinsville, Ga., Chevrolet, 3, accident, $1,895.

Race Statistics
Time of Race: 2 hours 10 minutes 8 seconds
Margin of Victory: 2.400 seconds
Fastest Qualifier: K.Harvick (133.775 mph, 23.547 seconds)
Caution Flags: 10 for 68 laps.
Lead Changes: 18 among 4 drivers.
Lap Leaders: K.Harvick 1-38; J.Logano 39-41; K.Harvick 42-44; J.Logano 45-60; K.Harvick 61-85; J.Logano 86; K.Harvick 87-89; J.Logano 90; K.Harvick 91; J.Logano 92-101; J.Lofton 102-103; M.Duncan 104-130; J.Lofton 131-135; K.Harvick 136-162; J.Logano 163; K.Harvick 164-165; J.Logano 166-184; K.Harvick 185-193; J.Logano 194-200.

Herandez's #4 car.