When Joey Logano muscled his way past Mark Martin and into the lead in Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway, it wasn't a surprise to anyone – including Martin himself.
However, that didn't mean Martin was happy with the way Logano went about capturing the lead. The veteran driver said it's not the way he would have gone about it if the roles were reversed.
"It has been acceptable in this racing for a long time," Martin said after calling Logano's pass a "bump-and-run" move. "It's not how I would have done it, but certainly if I'd have had a fast enough car, he would have gotten a return. But I couldn't quite keep up with him.
"It was great racing, and everybody does what they decide to do."
RELATED: NASCAR results, recap from Pocono
All Martin could do afterward was swallow a somewhat frustrating and foul-tasting second-place finish.
"We went after that thing really hard," Martin said after the race. "We had a great race car. I really stuck my neck out on the line to get that lead, almost pulled it off the restart before, and I was willing to risk it all to try to get the lead.
"And once I got out there, Joey was just stronger than we were, just a little bit stronger, and I just – you know, I was pushing as hard as I could push and had a little slip there off of (Turn) 3 and he was able to get up on me and get by. We certainly would have got back up there and raced for the win after the pass if we'd have had the car. But he was able to pull away."
Not surprisingly, Logano had a different version of how everything unfolded.
"... I was able to have a big run coming to him there," Logano said. "Went into (Turn) 1 and I tried to out-brake him, and he was protecting the bottom. I was trying to stick my nose in there, and we got really close, and I'm not even sure if we touched each other or not, but I know I got him air-loose at least and able to slide up underneath him and clear him by the time he got off of 1."
But for a traditionally clean driver like Martin, having to use your bumper to get around a competitor is not something that is looked kindly upon. That explains why the veteran was not too enamored with the move Logano executed on him to seize the lead and prevent him from winning for the first time since September 2009.
But even amid the disappointment of losing a race he felt he had won, Martin was still able to reflect on what was otherwise a very satisfactory day for him and his Michael Waltrip Racing team.
"It was a great race, and I'm very, very proud of my race team for putting me in something that would give me a shot," Martin said. "I'm having fun with it. Maybe next week we'll be the ones with the trophy."