Tony Stewart lamented playing a crucial role in Joey Logano's massive wreck in the early laps of Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Dover.
The two-time champion got into the back of the driver who replaced him this year at the wheel of the No. 20 Joe Gibbs car when Logano slowed down on lap 31 to try to avoid contact with Bobby Labonte who was ahead of him in the middle of the pack.
Stewart was caught by surprise and he was unable to avoid clipping the rear bumper of Logano's Toyota, which got sent into a spin, crashing against the barrier before further contact with Reed Sorenon's car sent the 19-year-old's Camry into a series of rolls.
"I've never felt sicker in my life than when we hit Joey [Logano] like that; we hit him a ton," said Stewart. "I didn't see it coming – that was the worst part. He had to check up, something happened in front of him to make him have to do that and I don't know what it was.
"When he did, we drilled him in a spot where we were supposed to be wide-open on the racetrack. You could tell something made him check up first. You just can't see through the cars."
Logano admitted at being scared while flipping one time after another. His car rolled at least seven times before coming to rest, but the Sprint Cup rookie walked out of it unharmed and just a bit shaken.
"It just really scared the heck out of me," said Logano. "That was pretty much the biggest thing was –I was firing the whole time and I'm not 100 percent sure what happened. Spotter was clearing me low. I got down there and then they checked up getting into the corner.
"Looked like I got tagged from behind – I'm not really sure. I haven't seen a replay yet. I'm not sure I want to see a replay. It started rolling and I was in there like, 'Damn, please make this thing stop.' And it wouldn't. It just kept going and going.
"I was fine. It goes to show how safe these cars are."
While Logano's race ended on the spot, Stewart was able to recover despite some damage to the front end and right rear corner of his car. His ninth place finish allowed him to move up one place in the Chase, although he lamented losing points again to his main title rivals.
"I can't say I'm satisfied because I still lost points," said Stewart. "That's how competitive this Chase is, too – I got a top 10 and I'm not happy with it. I'm proud of the effort from the team, really proud of that. We dodged another bullet".
Stewart is now fifth in the Chase standings, 106 points behind leader Mark Martin.