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Late-race issues plague three playoff drivers

FORT WORTH, TEXAS – OCTOBER 17: Kyle Larson, driver of the #5 HendrickCars.com Chevrolet, Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 Interstate Batteries Toyota, Ryan Blaney, driver of the #12 DEX Imaging Ford, and Joey Logano, driver of the #22 AAA Insurance Ford, race during the NASCAR Cup Series Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on October 17, 2021 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

FORT WORTH, TEXAS –Sunday’s Autotrader Echo Park Automotive 500 at Texas Motor Speedway was a relatively quiet race for the eight remaining NASCAR Cup Series playoff drivers – until Lap 300.

Four cautions flew from Lap 300 onward in Sunday’s race, beginning with a Lap 300 caution for Joey Logano blowing an engine.

Logano’s engine failure was the first he encountered this season. Before the failure, he ran inside the Top 10 throughout the day.

Photo by Amanda Montoya/TRE

On Lap 315, Denny Hamlin encountered a flat left-rear tire and spin after making contact with Ryan Blaney. Hamlin pitted for the flat tire and damage and continued.

On Lap 329, Chris Buescher spun into Hamlin exiting turn two, causing damage to Hamlin’s front end. His team repaired the car and Hamlin continued.

Photo by Erick Messer/TRE

Between the two Hamlin-involved cautions, fellow playoff driver Martin Truex Jr. was tapped by Daniel Suarez in turn 3 on Lap 321. Truex spun and hit the outside wall hard, causing him to fall out of the race.

Photo by Jeff Ames/TRE

Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr. and Joey Logano finished 11th, 25th and 30th, respectively. Hamlin is nine points ahead of the cutline, while Truex Jr. and Logano are 22 and 43 points below the cutline, respectively.

The next race for the NASCAR Cup Series is the October 24 Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway (3 p.m. ET; TV: NBCSN; Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

SOURCES:
NASCAR
Racing-Reference.Info

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