There are races each year that for a driver, even if they have experienced victory in that race before, they want to win it again. But to get that first taste of victory in that race, that is one to savor for many years.
One of those races is at Bristol, specifically when the lights come on for their late-August thriller and the emotions begin to run hot. It has been a race where drivers have been dumped either on the last lap, or during the middle stages. They will toss equipment at their car, and sometimes at other drivers. Pointing goes down between drivers too, whether it's pointing to their head letting another know they need to think more, or pointing another finger to show their displeasure at their actions. This race has seen it's share of rattled cages, and this year was no exception.
In the end, the taste of victory came down to a battle between teammates, and the one that has already tasted victory in this race was not the one being hunted. Instead, he was the hunter. Brad Keselowski tried every way he could, but ran out of time and real estate to get the job done.
When the final lap finished, it was Joey Logano tasting his first win at Bristol, and his third win of the season. Check the night race at Thunder Valley off for "Sliced Bread" because he was best in the end.
No writer could correctly predict his win, and in a twist only three managed top-five finishes, with all others outside the top-10. Here's how things stacked up following the Irwin Tools Night Race:
Rob Tiongson (839) Jeff Gordon finished 16th - 5
Ryan O'Hara (823) Jeff Gordon finished 16th - 5
Patti Rodisch (812) Jeff Gordon finished 16th - 3
Kara Martin (802) Kyle Busch finished 36th - 3
Dustin Parks (801) Brad Keselowski finished 2nd - 2
Sal Sigala Jr. (767) Kyle Busch finished 36th - 5
Rob Blount (761) Kevin Harvick finished 11th - 3
Billy Fellin (754) Kyle Busch finished 36th - 1
Aaron Rosser (745) Kurt Busch finished 5th - 2
James Broomhead (692) Kurt Busch finished 5th - 2
Michael Hirshbein (686) Kyle Busch finished 36th - 1
Misan Akuya (665) Kevin Harvick finished 11th - 1
Next Race: The one thing about night racing that is common among a lot of fans and drivers alike is that they wish for more of them. This year saw Kansas get a night race at the beginning of the season for the first time, the Daytona 500 became a night race, and for the first time both Bristol races became a night cap.
Why not have another consecutive night race, just like earlier this year with Richmond, Darlington and Charlotte all in successive weeks. Now, it's the summer version of a string of races under the lights. This week was high banks and high speeds, but every car was within feet of each other on a small half-mile track. Next week, the speeds not only go up, but they also get to go to a track three times as big, where sliding is practically guaranteed every lap.
It will be another hot night when NASCAR heads to the home of the Braves and the Falcons, because the Atlanta Motor Speedway is ready to host it's yearly event on Labor Day weekend.
Writers, time to slide into making your decisions for the next-to-last race to make the Chase. Your picks must be locked in by Thursday, August 28, at 10 p.m. ET for the Oral-B USA 500.