Dale Earnhardt Jr. battles pit road issues and Joey Logano at Bristol

BRISTOL, TN - AUGUST 22: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, leads Trevor Bayne, driver of the #6 AdvoCare Ford, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series IRWIN Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

BRISTOL, TN – AUGUST 22: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, leads Trevor Bayne, driver of the #6 AdvoCare Ford, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series IRWIN Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2015 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

Dale Earnhardt Jr. fought with the leaders several times during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Irwin Tools Night Race Saturday night at Bristol Motor Speedway. Unfortunately for the Hendrick Motorsports driver it was for all the wrong reasons.

After starting 20th, Earnhardt was moving steadily towards the front. But during the first pit stops of the night, Earnhardt took only two tires and prior to the restart he reported a possible loose wheel and had to pit again dropping from 13th to 38th. He was forced to battle then leader Kyle Busch to stay on the lead lap. He held off Busch for a few laps but ultimately went a lap down.  A wave-around got him back on the lead lap 125.  Earnhardt tried to move forward but found little progress on the half-mile track that is notoriously hard to pass on.   As the halfway point of the 500 lap race neared Earnhardt found himself fighting with new leader, and eventual race winner, Joey Logano to stay on the lead lap. The duo fought for several intense laps until Earnhardt brushed the outside wall allowing Logano to rocket past.

A well-timed caution shortly after allowed Earnhardt to once again make up his lost lap. MORE>>>

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