Handling Issues Relegate Logano to 18th at Charlotte
October 13, 2013THE RACE
Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval, Concord, NC)
Saturday, October 12, 2013
The No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil/Hertz Ford Fusion
Driven By: Joey Logano
Starting Position: 12
Finish Position: 18
Driver's Points Position: 11
THE RACE REVIEW
· Joey Logano qualified the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil/Hertz Ford Fusion in the 12th position for Saturday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
· With an average career finish of ninth at Charlotte, Logano knew from the start of the race that he and the team needed to work on the No. 22 Ford Fusion in order to get it to his liking. Logano radioed in that he had no drive off the corners and the car was really loose on corner exit, meaning he couldn’t drive the all-important high line at the 1.5-mile track.
· Logano fell to 20th position as the car was still handling extremely loose off the corners. Despite some big changes made during the first stop, the car’s performance didn’t really improve, which resulted in crew chief Todd Gordon calling for even bigger adjustments on the next stop.
· As the first 100 laps wore on, Logano was able to claw his way back up to 14th place. However, a missing lug nut during a round of pit stops forced Logano to make two trips down pit lane and restart at the back of the field. A long green-flag run then then caught Logano a lap down as the leaders set a torrid pace.
· For the remainder of the race, Logano fought an ill-handling car and tried to get back on the lead lap. For nearly 70 laps, Logano held onto the free pass position but he was never able to catch a caution when he needed one to return to lead-lap racing.
· Logano was able to race back to 16th but he remained one and eventually two laps down to the leaders as just a handful of cars were on the lead lap.
· As he was not able to make it to the end of the race on fuel, Logano couldn’t take the wave around during a late-race caution. After he restarted in the 20th position, Logano was able to pick up two additional positions before the checkered flags waved, giving him an 18th place finish.
· With the result, Logano has now finished inside the top 20 in nine of his 10 career NSCS starts at Charlotte.
· Logano now sits 11th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings, less than 20 points out of the sixth position.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING
YOU HAD A TOUGH RUN. WHAT HAPPENED WITH YOUR RACECAR?
“It seems like you end up saying this a lot sometimes, but we really had a car that was better than where we finished. I think we had about an eighth to 10th-place car tonight and we finished 18th with it. That is frustrating and we need to work on making these days better. We were just too far off at the start of the race and by the time we were able to get the car to my liking, we were already a couple of laps down. Then, you get no cautions and you just don’t have the chance to make those laps up. We had some slow pit stops and a few problems in the pits and that put us down a couple of spots too. It was just not a very good night for the Shell-Pennzoil/Hertz Ford. We need to get by this and focus on the next race. But we need to be better. You only have a limited number of races at the end of the year and you have to make every one of them count. Now we have five more and we have to make the most out of those five.”
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