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Michigan NASCAR: Jeff Gordon wins after Joey Logano battle

Jeff Gordon wins Michigan NASCAR

Jeff Gordon took his third NASCAR Sprint Cup win of the season at Michigan, in a race bookended by yellow flags and a dogged fight with Joey Logano.

It was a scrappy start to the race as first Kyle Busch, and then a multi­-car shunt caused by contact between Danica Patrick and Jeff Burton (pictured below), prompted yellow flags, but when racing was resumed under green, it was Logano and Gordon who were the class of the field.

Trading the lead for most of the race, Logano led more than 80 laps, while Gordon spent over a quarter of the race in first position.

After a relatively quiet middle segment, the yellow flags were once again out in full force as smoke billowed from Brad Keselowski's car after a brush with the wall 35 laps from the end, followed by a trip into the barriers for Kurt Busch as he made a bid for the lead at a late restart.

When the last restart finally came, only a handful of laps remained, and Gordon took advantage of Logano's slow getaway to take the race lead.

The pair were soon scrapping with Kevin Harvick and Paul Menard, but Gordon was able to escape and Logano dropped behind Harvick to end his day in a disappointing third, just 0.032s ahead of a fast­charging Menard.

Danica Patrick, crash, Michigan NASCAR 2014

Dale Earnhardt Jr had a quiet race, finishing in fifth ahead of Clint Bowyer in sixth and Denny Hamlin in seventh, while Keselowski had a great recovery from his trouble to take eighth.

Jimmie Johnson looked to have leading pace early on, but his race was hampered by a gearshift problem that forced him to pit several times. With his pitcrew having handed Johnson a pair of pliers to locate the problem, the champion fell off the lead lap, and only regained it towards the end, ultimately finishing ninth. Greg Biffle rounded out the top 10.

Elsewhere, Kyle Larson had a day to forget, colliding with Earnhardt in the pitlane and then hitting the wall in an incident that left his Ganassi Chevrolet on fire.

Only three races now remain before the Chase begins in September at Chicagoland.

Results - 200 laps:

Pos  Driver              Team/Car                     Time/Gap
 1.  Jeff Gordon         Hendrick Chevrolet       2h49m16.000s
 2.  Kevin Harvick       Stewart-Haas Chevrolet        +1.413s
 3.  Joey Logano         Penske Ford                   +3.605s
 4.  Paul Menard         Childress Chevrolet           +3.637s
 5.  Dale Earnhardt Jr   Hendrick Chevrolet            +6.895s
 6.  Clint Bowyer        Waltrip Toyota                +9.608s
 7.  Denny Hamlin        Joe Gibbs Toyota             +10.037s
 8.  Brad Keselowski     Penske Ford                  +11.997s
 9.  Jimmie Johnson      Hendrick Chevrolet           +12.254s
10.  Greg Biffle         Roush Fenway Ford            +13.611s
11.  Ryan Newman         Childress Chevrolet          +14.635s
12.  Marcos Ambrose      Petty Ford                   +15.587s
13.  AJ Allmendinger     JTG Daugherty Chevrolet      +15.810s
14.  Jamie McMurray      Ganassi Chevrolet            +16.295s
15.  Ricky Stenhouse Jr  Roush Fenway Ford            +17.209s
16.  Kasey Kahne         Hendrick Chevrolet           +17.903s
17.  Casey Mears         Germain Chevrolet            +19.590s
18.  Danica Patrick      Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       +21.686s
19.  Brian Vickers       Waltrip Toyota                 -1 lap
20.  Aric Almirola       Petty Ford                     -1 lap
21.  David Gilliland     Front Row Ford                 -1 lap
22.  Austin Dillon       Childress Chevrolet            -1 lap
23.  Carl Edwards        Roush Fenway Ford             -2 laps
24.  David Ragan         Front Row Ford                -2 laps
25.  Cole Whitt          BK Toyota                     -2 laps
26.  Alex Bowman         BK Toyota                     -2 laps
27.  Reed Sorenson       Baldwin Chevrolet             -3 laps
28.  Josh Wise           Parsons Chevrolet             -3 laps
29.  Landon Cassill      Hillman Chevrolet             -3 laps
30.  JJ Yeley            BK Toyota                     -3 laps
31.  Kurt Busch          Stewart-Haas Chevrolet        -4 laps
32.  Travis Kvapil       FAS Lane Ford                 -4 laps
33.  Dave Blaney         Baldwin Chevrolet             -4 laps
34.  Alex Kennedy        Circle Sport Chevrolet        -5 laps
35.  Joe Nemechek        NEMCO Toyota                  -5 laps
36.  Martin Truex Jr     Furniture Row Chevrolet      -23 laps*
37.  Jeff Burton         Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       -24 laps
38.  Matt Kenseth        Joe Gibbs Toyota             -30 laps
39.  Kyle Busch          Joe Gibbs Toyota             -41 laps
40.  Michael Annett      Baldwin Chevrolet            -45 laps*
41.  Trevor Bayne        Wood Brothers Ford           -47 laps

* Not running at chequered flag


     Justin Allgaier     HScott Chevrolet              97 laps
     Kyle Larson         Ganassi Chevrolet             94 laps
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Gordon on pole, team-mates struggle