Originally written on Race Review Online  |  Last updated 10/6/14
Joey Logano smoked the field, while Elliott Sadler’s title dreams went up in smoke. Logano, the pole-sitter, dominated Saturday’s Great Clips 200, beating new Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Brian Vickers to the finish line to win for the ninth time in 21 starts this season, the first time at Phoenix International Raceway and the 18th time in his career. Sadler’s wreck forced the race to a green-white-checkered-flag finish and extended the length of the race from the scheduled 200 laps to 204. Defending Nationwide Series champion Ricky Stenhouse Jr. ran third and opened his lead in the standings to 20 points over Sadler, whose late crash led to a 22nd-place finish. For the second consecutive year at Phoenix, Sadler’s championship hopes took a severe blow. Coming to the white flag in 12th place, Sadler tangled with Cole Whitt, backed into the outside wall and turned sideways into the path of Richard Childress Racing teammate Brendan Gaughan. The blow from Gaughan’s Chevrolet tore the nose off Sadler’s car. NASCAR red-flagged the race, and Sadler sat in his crippled car, after driving away from the accident scene. Sadler lost a lap in the pits while his car was repaired and rolled across the finish line at half speed. “I did it to myself,” said Sadler, who started from the rear after slapping the wall during time trials and going to a backup car. “I put my team in a hole, qualifying like I did. We tried to work on this car as much as we could, and I just got a little loose there, getting under the 88 [Whitt]. “I just wanted to say, ‘My fault.’ I should have done a better job for these guys. I just apologized to them for putting them in this position heading to Homestead [site of next Saturday's season finale]. We’re going to go there and fight, but I definitely dug ourselves a hole.” The caution for Sadler’s wreck interrupted a fierce battle between Logano and Vickers, both of whom thought they would have won had the race stayed green to the checkered flag. Logano pulled ahead after the drivers swapped the lead following a restart on Lap 196. “He got underneath me, and then I crossed him over off of [Turn] 4,” said Logano, who led 168 laps. “And then I was able to clear in the middle of 3 and 4, and it was like, ‘OK, I’ve got him now.’ I think my car was good enough to take off. … “I got pretty nervous when he passed me [after the restart]. It was like, ‘Uh, oh. This is not good. I’m about to give this thing away.’ Brian did an awesome job. It was a heck of a race.” After starting from the back, Sadler worked his way toward the front from the drop of the green flag, climbing to the 18th position before John Blankenship’s spin on Lap 32 brought out the second caution. After a two-tire call on Lap 71, under the third yellow for Blankenship’s second spin, Sadler restarted eighth. When Paulie Harraka looped his car in Turn 4 on Lap 89, NASCAR called the fifth caution. Sadler stayed out and restarted fourth — and quickly gave back almost everything he had gained to that point. Sadler went wide into the marbles on the restart on Lap 95 and nearly lost control of the No. 2 Chevrolet. By the time he had regained his momentum, Sadler was 15th and running behind Stenhouse, who had pitted for fuel and tires. Running 11th on Lap 148 when Mike Wallace tapped Timmy Hill’s Chevrolet and sent it spinning, Sadler chose to pit for four tires under caution on Lap 149, leaving him 14 spots behind Stenhouse in fourth for a restart on Lap 154. Sadler, however, gained five positions to 13th before contact from Kyle Busch’s Toyota turned Sam Hornish Jr. on Lap 155. By then, Stenhouse was running second to Logano. Stenhouse can lock up his second consecutive title with a finish of 16th or better at Homestead, 17th if he leads a lap and 18th if he leads the most laps. “We’ve got to keep doing what we’re doing,” Stenhouse said. “We’ve given up 20 points in one race, so it’s not even close to over. … It’s going to be tough, because obviously I’m going to have to not push the limits as much as I like. I like going for race wins, too, so it’s going to be a fine balance there.” Logano extended the lead of the No. 18 JGR car to 33 points in the owners’ standings over the No. 6 Ford driven by Stenhouse. JGR will win the owners’ title if the 18 finishes 28th or better at Homestead, 29th if it leads a lap or 30th if it leads the most laps. NASCAR Wire Service, photo courtesy of NASCARmedia.com The post Joey Logano wins NNS race at Phoenix, Elliott Sadler’s title hopes take a hit appeared first on Race Review Online.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Cam Newton calls out 'classless' Panthers fans

Report: 49ers to part ways with Harbaugh after season finale

Brad Stevens shoots down rumors he's headed to Hoosiers

Jameis Winston cleared in code of conduct case

Sherman: Patrick Peterson would be benched on Seahawks

Fans struck by lightning after Buccaneers-Packers game

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Philip Rivers playing through painful back injury

Report: Bears could have interest in Jim Harbaugh

Report: Shanahan interested in coaching next season

Report: Michigan has its eye on several NFL coaches

Report: Titans, Jay Cutler have mutual interest in trade

Phillies GM told Ryan Howard team is better off without him

10 takeaways from NFL Week 16

Tony Romo leads Dallas Cowboys to NFC East title

Ole Miss QB arrested after fighting, threatening bouncers

WATCH: Marshawn Lynch's ridiculous TD run

WATCH: Steelers' Gay draws flag for taunting teammate

WATCH: Three players ejected after Giants-Rams fight

WATCH: Dominic Raiola stomps on Bears player's ankle

WATCH: Arian Foster throws TD pass, drops scoreboard taunt

WATCH: Johnny Manziel leaves with injury after taking big hit

NHL has warned 22 players about diving

Nick Mangold wears NYDP hat to honor fallen officers

Five things we learned from the first day of bowl games

NASCAR News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

10 takeaways from NFL Week 16

Cam Newton calls out 'classless' Panthers fans

Raiola stomps on Bears player's ankle

Bears interested in Jim Harbaugh?

Shanahan to return to 2015?

Browns interested in drafting Mariota?

Mullen wears funny Christmas sweater

RG3 returning to Redskins?

Tom Izzo hot after bad loss

Kings, Nets talking Deron Williams trade

WATCH: DeSean mocks Eagles

Vick: Winston is the future of the NFL

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.