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Cup Notes: Harvick-Logano Feud Rekindles

| Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Sunday, February 15 2015

Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick prepare to exchange words after Saturday night's Sprint Unlimited. (RacinToday/HHP photo by David Tulis)

Guess the off season didn’t result in any rust forming on the feud between Sprint Cup drivers Kevin Harvick and Joey Logano.

A late wreck involving the two resulted in fighting words when the two got out of their cars after the race.

“(Logano) just drove us straight in the fence,” Harvick, the 2014 Cup champion from Stewart-Haas Racing, said. “Everybody is trying to be aggressive, but you still have to know when and where you can do things. You can’t just drive somebody in the fence. I’m just disappointed for my guys on my Jimmy John’s/Budweiser team just for the fact that they worked hard to get their car back where it needed to be. And then just one of those deals where you just know that is going to work. Whether it is an all-star race or not, it doesn’t really matter, you can’t just take your head off and throw it on the floorboard and not use your brain.”

Right back at ya, Team Penske’s Logano said.

“That is Kevin (Harvick) just being an instigator just like everywhere else. It is a new year and the same stuff. I was trying to help really, to be honest with you, we had a run and I was pushing. I was doing the same thing with the 78 all night and it was working. We got in the corner and he got tight and he got into the fence. I was trying to help. He just doesn’t understand I was trying to help. I understand his frustration but I was trying to help out and get to the front and try to win this thing. There are no points or anything like that so you go for the win.”

Harvick and Logano have been feuding for years. With words and with heated post-race spats.

Leading up to last year’s championship race in Homestead, Fla., Harvick put the verbal needle to Logano a number of times during press conferences.

Also entering the ring Saturday was Harvick’s teammate, Danica Patrick. She took had a few things to say to Logano after the 75-lap Unlimited exhibition event.

Logano was asked what kind of things.

“I don’t know. I am confused,” he said. “I don’t know what going on right now. I am really confused about everything.”

Carl Edwards launched the Joe Gibbs Racing portion of his Cup career Saturday with a podium finish.

Felt great, he said after his third-place finish.

“Yeah, that was a good day,” Edwards, who bolted from Roush Fenway Racing after the 2014 season, said. “I got to do a little bit of driving down there in turn one. That worked out well and then to be a very small part of what Matt did there for the win – even though we raced, we didn’t really give each other much there at the end, but there for a little while we tried to work together very well and that was fun. I think we’re off to a great start.”

Edwards said that as the end of the race drew near, he thought he was going to start his JGR run with a victory. He blamed Martin Truex Jr., who finished second to Matt Kenseth in the race, for his third-place finish.

“Man that was crazy,” Edwards. “I need to see a replay with the 78 (Truex Jr.). It felt like he just all but wrecked me that one time, but fortunately we got it straightened out and it was a good start for ARRIS and for Stanley and our relationship with Toyota. I’m glad Matt (Kenseth) won that race, but, man, I could taste it there. That was a lot of fun – a cool event. The car is one piece. We can go work on qualifying tomorrow. I learned a bunch, so that will be great for the 500.”

Did racing witness the beginning of Wreckweeks on Saturday night?

Sure looked like it as several good-sized accidents seriously trimmed the field down during the 75 laps of the Unlimited.

A five-car incident garaged the No. 2 Team Penske Ford of Brad Keselowski on Lap 22. Then, on Lap 45, a 14-car job in Turn 4 occurred when Greg Biffle tapped Jamie McMurray’s bumper and sent the No. 1 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet out of control.

That wreck resulted in the race being red-flagged for 15 minutes. Also involved were the cars of Paul Menard, Jimmie Johnson, defending race winner Denny Hamlin, Kasey Kahne and Clint Bowyer.

Hamlin’s No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota took to the air in the grass infield.

“It was a matter of time that we were going to wreck,” Hamlin said. “We were side-drafting so aggressively from the first lap of the race… We were trying to get to front and protect our track position, because we knew this was coming. I just couldn’t get there quick enough.

“I didn’t realize I was airborne until I felt it come down and I was like, ‘Wow, that’s some pretty good hang time.’ These tracks, when you hit the grass now, it’s death. Your day is done and it’s going to be lucky not to have a completely demolished car when it’s over and that’s kind of what happened. It ripped our whole front end off.”

Teammate Kyle Busch said, “I was just trying to miss them all. I didn’t see how any of them really started. I think the one with me and the 14 (Tony Stewart) though – the 4 (Kevin Harvick) kind of came up to the middle and the 14 was following him and I was already in the middle and it kind of forced me up a little bit. I don’t know that we touched, but maybe we did and Tony went around. I hate it for those guys.”

| Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Sunday, February 15 2015
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