AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) -- Ricky Stenhouse Jr. moved a big step closer toward defending his Nationwide Series championship with a strong run at Phoenix International Raceway.
He also got some help from Elliott Sadler, who had a rough day from start to finish.
The two title contenders started Saturday tied for the championship and likely would have gone into next weekend's finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway locked in a tight race. But as Stenhouse battled Joey Logano and Brian Vickers for the lead headed to the white flag, Elliott Sadler imploded 10 positions behind them.
Sadler was racing hard for 12th with Justin Allgaier and Cole Whitt when he triggered a three-car accident.
"I just got loose. It's hard to put this into words," Sadler said. "It's been a long, great season and my guys deserve better effort from me than wrecking the car on the last lap."
The accident brought the race to a halt, and Sadler had to sit in his battered car as NASCAR cleaned the track.
Once cleared, h...