The Norman Transcript

National Sports

March 25, 2013

Busch avoids wreck at finish

(Continued)

FONTANA, Calif. —

NASCAR didn’t immediately have an update on his condition, although JGR President J.D. Gibbs thought Hamlin would be fine. Hamlin’s girlfriend, Jordan Fish, tweeted that Hamlin was “alert n awake, main concern is his back.”

“We were super fast, led a lot of laps,” Logano said. “Nothing to hang our head down about, that’s for sure.”

Stewart, the defending Fontana champion, then got his crack at Logano, who went extremely low to block Stewart out of the last restart, killing Stewart’s momentum and consigning him to a 22nd-place finish.

“I had to throw the block there,” Logano said. “That was a race for the lead. I felt if the 14 got underneath me, that was going to be the end of my opportunity to win the race, so I was just trying to protect the spot I had.”

Stewart ran over to Logano’s car and confronted him after the race, shoving the younger driver — who then threw a water bottle at Stewart, the veteran said — before teammates pulled them apart.

Stewart was replaced by Logano at Joe Gibbs Racing when Stewart left to drive for his own team starting in 2009.

“What the hell do you think I was mad about?” Stewart asked before providing a colorful series of expletives.

Roger Penske, in St. Petersburg, Fla., for the IndyCar race, firmly backed Logano, who was hired by Penske Racing last September.

“I think it’s great,” Penske said. “I think (Logano and Hamlin) have got to work it out themselves. He knows what the big picture is. To get yourself knocked off the track every other weekend, you’ll never get in the Chase and have a chance to win the championship, so I think cooler heads will prevail. He said, ’I’m going to be around a long time,’ was his comment to me.”

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