Joey Logano Conquers The World's Fastest Half-Mile
August 24, 2014
Irwin Tools Night Race
Bristol Motor Speedway
Saturday, August 23, 2014
The No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion
Driver: Joey Logano
Starting Position: 5
Finish Position: 1
Driver's Points Position: 4
THE RACE REVIEW
· Joey Logano and the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion team qualified fifth for Saturday night’s race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Logano continues to be impressive in qualifying, as he notched his 11th top-five start of the 2014 season.
· As the race began, Logano worked the lower groove and tried to find a spot up in the high lane, eventually settling into seventh position. Logano held serve just outside the top five before NASCAR’s competition caution flag flew on lap 60.
· After taking four tires and fuel on his pit stop, Logano set sail toward the front of the field and took the lead for the first time on lap 104. Once at the front of the pack, Logano held the top spot until the next round of stops.
· Despite restarting third, Logano again took the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford back toward the front and raced between second and fourth over the next 100 laps.
· Under a lap 197 caution, Logano took two tires while several others cars stayed out on the track. Once again, despite restarting the race ninth and fighting through slower traffic, Logano was able to race his way into the top five.
· After several chassis adjustments by crew chief Todd Gordon, the Shell-Pennzoil Ford came alive in the second half of the event and Logano found himself running in second and chasing down the leaders.
· Between laps 250 and 430, Logano ran no worse than fourth despite being on a different tire strategy than the cars ahead of him on several occasions.
· On lap 433, the Shell-Pennzoil Ford came into the pits for the final time, getting four tires and fuel and coming out in the sixth position. Over the next 65 laps, Logano began picking off other cars one at a time, eventually getting to the back bumper of the race leader Matt Kenseth.
· As the two drivers engaged in a good battle that entertained the crowd, Logano was able to take the lead for the final time on lap 456 and race to the finish, holding off his charging Team Penske teammate Brad Keselowski for the victory.
· The win was Logano’s third win of the season, which ties him for the most in the series with Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
· With the win, Logano earned three additional bonus points for the Chase for the Sprint Cup and moved to fourth in the Chase Grid point standings. Logano remained fourth in the regular NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings and cut his deficit to the leader to just 84 points.
· Logano led the event four times for a total of 76 laps.
· The victory was Logano’s sixth-career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win and his fourth for Team Penske. It also marked the 399th win in the rich history of Team Penske.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING
JOEY LOGANO, NO. 22 SHELL-PENNZOIL FORD
HOW SIGNIFICANT IS WINNING THE NIGHT RACE AT BRISTOL?
“It’s a really big one. I feel like the Bristol night race is maybe the third or fourth biggest race of the year. Just the atmosphere before the race, if it doesn’t pump you up nothing does. It’s just the baddest mamma jamma race track ever built. It’s so much fun to go around and you have to hustle the car so hard, and it’s something we don’t typically have. We talked a little bit about it the other day how hard you have to drive the car and wondering if it was going to be like that in the race, and, yes, you had to drive the car that hard in the race to go fast. It just means a lot to be able to get this victory. Penske with the 1-2 finish there and all three Team Penske drivers being able to get a win with Brad in the Truck and Ryan last night and then ourselves trying to put the cherry on top here in the Cup race. All of us got a win, so everyone is happy. It’s definitely a very special weekend for Team Penske to be able to do that for Ford. Right now, the momentum that we have and the cars that we have, we’ve been fast at every type of race track, I wish we were I Atlanta tomorrow.”
HOW IMPORTANT WAS PATIENCE TONIGHT?
“Important and not important. On the restart there when we were sixth with tires I said, ‘I’ve got to capitalize right now.’ So I went as hard as I could, raced the 20 (car) really hard and got everybody I could and then I was trying to keep up. The 20 was really fast and then there at the end I had something going wrong. I don’t know if it was the brakes or a hub failing in the rear, but it started vibrating really bad and getting really loose. I’m like, ‘Oh, come on. A couple more laps, a couple more laps.’ So of course there’s always added drama at the end that you don’t want, but patience didn’t come into play and then when I was racing the 24 there at the end it did come into play. We were able to make there at the end.”