Joey Logano left little doubt to the outcome of Saturday’s Xfinity Series race at Phoenix International Raceway.
Logano, who started from the pole, led 176 of 200 laps on his way to a win in the Axalta 200, his first series victory since the 2013 season.
The win was also his ninth victory from the pole in the series and his 22nd career win.
Matt Kenseth finished second, Kevin Harvick was third, Austin Dillon fourth and Erik Jones ended up fifth.
Other than avoiding lapped traffic, Logano’s key moment in the race might have happened before it even began – when he won the pole earlier in the day. Getting out front and having the best pit stall proved too much for the competition to overcome.
Three who mattered
Joey Logano: Strangely enough, Logano posted eight top-five finishes in his 10 series starts last season but none turned into a win. He corrected that problem quickly this season.
Erik Jones: Jones continues to do a top-notch job filling in for the injured Kyle Busch in the Xfinity Series as well as running his full schedule in the Truck series.
Chase Elliott: Elliott spun out late in the race after contact with Ty Dillon but rallied to finish seventh.
▪ Rookie Daniel Suarez has been doing a lot of on-the-job training for Joe Gibbs Racing in the season’s first four races, but after a 39th place finish in the season-opener at Daytona, he has finished 14th or higher in each of the last three.
▪ Brennan Poole looked like he had a chance at a second consecutive top-10 finish with his HScott Motorsports with Chip Ganassi team but ran out of gas with 11 laps remaining, and he was forced to pit under green.
They said it
“We had four straight seconds coming into this race, so it was great to get a win.” – Joey Logano, race winner.
Auto Club 300
Where: Auto Club Speedway, Fontana, Calif.
When: 4 p.m. Saturday, Fox Sports 1.
Three tweets from Saturday’s race: