Logano Salvages a Top-20 Finish at Bristol
March 17, 2014
Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway (.533-mile speedway, Bristol, Tenn.)
The No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford
· Joey Logano started Sunday’s Food City 500 from fourth place in the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford at Bristol Motor Speedway. Logano was actually fastest in the first 30-minute session during “knockout” qualifying, but clocked in the fourth-best time in the final 10-minute session.
· After a two-hour rain delay to start the event, Logano showed that the Shell-Pennzoil Ford was going to be one of the fastest cars on the track from the drop of the green flag. In just three laps, he was running second and on lap 42, Logano took the race lead and paced the field until a competition caution on lap 50.
· Logano ran second for 20 more laps and then radioed to his crew that the power steering was starting to fail. Just 20 laps later, Logano reported that the power steering was completely gone and he began to lose positions rapidly on track. Logano dropped from fourth to 25th place as he fell a lap down to the leaders. However, a caution for rain allowed him to get back on the lead lap.
· During what turned out to be another nearly four-hour rain delay, the Shell-Pennzoil team came up with a game plan to fix the No. 22 Ford Fusion. When racing finally resumed under the lights at Bristol, Logano pulled the car behind pit wall and the team went to work, fixing the power steering box in just three laps.
· After falling to 42nd in the running order during the repairs, Logano methodically worked his way through the field. He tried to put the car in position to try and earn timely cautions and either get the free pass or take the wave around to gain laps back.
· Logano was able to get back to running just two laps down briefly, but fell back to three laps down by the end of the race.
· Despite never being able to gain his laps back, Logano was able to race his way to 20th place before taking the checkered flag.
· By leading laps at Bristol, Logano has now led laps in every event run this season in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
· With Sunday’s top-20 finish, Logano fell just two positions in the Sprint Cup Series point standings to sixth. He now sits just 22 points behind his teammate, Brad Keselowski, in the series standings.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING
JOEY LOGANO, NO. 22 SHELL-PENNZOIL FORD
IT LOOKS LIKE YOU HAD A GREAT CAR DESPITE THE FINISH. WHAT HAPPENED TO THE SHELL-PENNZOIL FORD?
"I think we had a Shell-Pennzoil Ford that could have won the race tonight for sure. Right from the start of the race, our car was really, really good. I was able to race to the front and get the lead from Brad, which showed how strong we were because Brad was bad fast all weekend long. But not too long after that competition caution, I knew something was going wrong and the power steering was going away. Eventually it completely went out and I couldn’t drive it. It was like it was working against me. You just can’t cut the car and make the moves you need to when that happens. So during the rain delay, the guys on the Shell-Pennzoil team came up with a plan to fix it. We knew we would lose some laps in the process, but we knew we needed to get it right. I thought we would lose five or six laps or more, but the guys were amazing and made the repairs and in just three laps. From there on out, we were just going to try and do what we could to make those laps up. But we couldn’t catch the cautions when we needed. We were hoping to take a couple of wave arounds, but every time we had hoped to, someone would stay out so we couldn’t do it. So we just did the best we could and we were able to make our way from 42nd up to 20th by the end of the race. It’s not the finish we wanted, but I have never seen a group of guys come together so much, form a plan, get it done and stick behind me. There are big things coming for this team down the road.”
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