LOUDON, N.H. (AP) - Nineteen-year-old Joey Logano became the youngest winner in the history of the NASCAR Sprint Cup series, winning the rain-shortened race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Logano moved into the lead on lap 264, three laps before the race was red-flagged.
Jeff Gordon finished second, followed by Kurt Busch, David Reutimann (ROO'-tih-man) and Tony Stewart.
Logano overcame a one-lap deficit after cutting his left-rear tire in the
late-stages of the race. He was the only driver who had yet to pit during the
final round of green flag stops.
Ryan Newman gave up the lead when he ran out of fuel and coasted into his pit
stall. That allowed Logano to take the top spot for the first time. He then
conserved enough fuel before rain fell on the 1.058-mile track.
"Obviously everything the end of the day went our way," Zipadelli said. "You
can't control the weather. The only thing we can do is try to play it to our
NASCAR displayed the red flag 28 laps short of the 301-lap scheduled
distance, with the race being called shortly after. Logano's first win, coming
in his 20th start, occurred at his hometrack.
"This is where I watched my first Cup race and where I ran my first Cup race
and where I won my first Cup race, so I could not have picked a better place,"
Logano said. This is kind of like a home turf place for me, a lot of family
and friends here."
His first Cup start came here last September, driving an entry for Hall of
Logano, a native of nearby Middletown, CT, became the youngest driver ever to
win a Cup Series race at 19 years, one month and four days. Kyle Busch
previously held the record at age 20 when he won in September 2005 at
"Obviously it's not the way you want to win your first race, in the rain, but
20 years down the road when you look in the record books, no one will know the
difference," Logano added.
Logano, who won a NASCAR Camping World East Series event at New Hampshire in
2007, became the third first-time race winner in NASCAR's top-tier circuit
this year. He joined Brad Keselowski (Talladega) and David Reutimann, who won
the rain-shortened Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway.
Jeff Gordon appeared to be on his way to reclaiming the lead after the last
round of stops, but the three-time New Hampshire winner had to settle for a
"I saw the rain coming, and I pushed it the first lap or so, and it started
getting pretty slick and started backing off," Gordon said. "Kurt (Busch)
really gained on me, and then (crew chief) Steve (Letarte) told me who was
actually the leader. At that moment, my heart sunk that we didn't have a shot
at winning it, and I was hoping we would run out of gas if it wane."
Kurt Busch finished third after winning at New Hampshire one year ago when
rain curtailed that event 17 laps short of the full distance.
"Last year, to drive into victory lane and do it in a rain shortened race, and
today to have it where we were fast enough to win and not get the win, that's
how this sport evens itself out," Busch said.
David Reutimann and Tony Stewart rounded out the top-five.
Gordon slightly trimmed Stewart's lead to 69 points.
Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, Sam Hornish, Jimmie Johnson and Kasey Kahne were
sixth through 10th, respectively.