Joey Logano is champion again.
The #22 driver sat on the pole, dominating the first stage and never left behind a Championship 4 driver at Phoenix Raceway on Sunday on his way to a big win and the NASCAR Cup Series Championship.
Lugano, 32, was the oldest driver in a Young Championship 4 – and the veteran confirmed himself on Sunday.
The Penske Team driver, who also won the 2018 Cup Series, racked up three wins at Phoenix Raceway.
Sunday’s race didn’t see much traffic, but the drama between the Championship 4 drivers – Lugano, Ross Chastain, Christopher Bell, Chase Elliott – was always there.
There was the end of the second stage, with Lugano and Bell stressing whether they had the fuel to finish the stage.
There was a wreck mid-stage 3 between Chastain and Elliott, as Chastain got down under car number 9 and sent him into the wall. Elliott had to go down the pit path and bury him in a lap, effectively ending his playoff hopes.
There was caution with about 40 laps remaining, as the Lugano pit crew made a flawless stop and extended their lead over Bell, who was stopped for a suboptimal 19.8 seconds.
And then, despite a late push from Chastain that sealed the lead, Logano stood tall.
“Thank you, thank you, thank you!” The future Hall of Famer shouted over the radio right before the spin-off celebration at the start and finish line.
Penske’s Lugano teammate Ryan Blaney finished second. Chastain finished third.
He finished the tenth bell. Elliott finished 28th.
Kyle Larson, contender for the Owner’s Championship, finished seventh.
Unofficial results from Phoenix Raceway
|POS.||Sentences||driver||time behind||Best Time||best speed|
|1||22||Joey Lugano (P)||–||27.23||132.207|
|3||1||Ross Chastain (P)||1.268||27,632||130,284|
|10||20||Christopher Bell (P)||7.311||27,769||129.641|
|11||2||Austin Cendrick #||8.83||27,763||129,669|
|12||16||AJ Allmendinger (i)||9.215||27,733||129.809|
|15th||19||Martin Truex Jr.||12.513||27,444||131.176|
|17||23||Daniel Hemrick (I)||15.21||27,865||129.194|
|19||21||Harrison Burton #||22.171||27,804||129,478|
|28||9||Chase Elliot (P)||-3||27,633||130,279|
|29||38||Todd Gilliland #||-3||28,357||126,953|
|31||78||PJ McLeod (I)||-5||28,525||126.205|
|32||47||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||-5||28,485||12126,382|
|33||15th||Garrett Smithley (I)||-8||28,523||126.214|
|36||77||Landon Cassel (I)||-228||28.432||126,618|