Paul Menard was the first to see the green flag wave to start the Ollie’s Bargain Outlet 250 and he was the first to see the checked flag at the end of the race at Michigan International Speedway. This was Menard’s second win the series – the first since 2006.
Menard was running behind Joey Logano in the closing laps when Logano was slow with five to go with a flat right rear tire. Logano’s bad luck turned into Menard’s good luck when Menard claimed the lead and came out with the win in the 125-lap contest.
It was Logano vs. Menard for much of the race. Logano was attempting to grab the lead from Menard on lap nine when Logano traveled up the racetrack and got into Menard. The contact caused both drivers to fall back in the field and had a lot of ground to make up.
Ty Dillon was able to capitalize on the action and took over the lead on lap 10.
Kyle Larson would stalk Dillon for the lead and he took over the top spot on lap 18. Meanwhile Logano and Menard were picking their way through the field. Logano was back in the top three by lap 27. Chase Elliott got by Kyle Larson for the lead on lap 52 when Larson got caught behind lapped traffic and a debris caution was called. On the restart, Larson would regain the lead. Another caution would move Menard to the lead after putting a move on the leaders to make it three-wide.
A late caution that occurred when Dylan Kwasniewski got loose and collected Trevor Bayne set up the final restart of the race. With 36 to go, Logano moved back to the front and continued to lead until a flat right rear tire caused him to pit with five to go. Menard went on to win the race.
Sam Hornish, Jr. was driving the No. 20 for Joe Gibbs Racing and didn’t have the best start to the race. He spun on lap 2 but didn’t sustain any damage. He would have to restart at the rear of the field. He kept gaining on the field every lap and was 12th by lap 63. More strategy and how expertly he can drive a race car would put him in the top five near the end of the race. He was fourth with 21 laps to go in the race and would eventually finish second. It wasn’t a bad outing for Hornish who doesn’t have a weekly schedule to keep his skills sharp.
The top ten: Paul Menard, Sam Hornish, Jr., Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Kyle Busch, Brian Scott, Chase Elliott, Regan Smith, Kyle Larson, Ty Dillon, Chris Buescher.
The next NASCAR Nationwide race will be Saturday, June 21 at 2:45 p.m. ET for the Gardner Denver 200 Fired Up by Johnsonville at Road America.