Logano Scores 4th Career Sprint Cup Victory at Texas
April 8, 2014
The Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway (1.5-mile speedway, Ft. Worth, Tex.)
· Joey Logano qualified 10th for Sunday’s Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. By making the final round in knockout qualifying on Friday, Logano is now the only driver to reach the final round in each qualifying session held this season.
· Rain once again played a part in the start of the race at Texas Motor Speedway, delaying the event until Monday afternoon. Mother Nature has not been kind to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series this season as it has rained at six of the seven events in 2014.
· At the beginning of the race, the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil/Hertz Ford Fusion was handling tight in the center of the corners and needed more drive coming out of the turns. Despite the handling issues, Logano was able to keep position near the top 10 as the first 50 laps were run at Texas.
· Logano moved into the top 10 by lap 60 despite the fact he was still struggling with issues on the car. Crew Chief Todd Gordon continued to make wedge and air pressure adjustments to the Shell-Pennzoil/Hertz Ford as the sun continued to shine, altering the track conditions.
· Drive off the corners was Logano’s biggest issue for the rest of the afternoon. However, the Team Penske driver continued to move his way through the field, as he entered the top five at lap 160.
· The Shell-Pennzoil/Hertz team had strong pit stops all afternoon long, as Logano consistently emerged from pit lane ahead of his competitors.
· By lap 200, Logano had raced his way into the top three.
· On a lap 226 restart, Logano found himself running second beside Penske teammate Brad Keselowski. The two drivers raced side-by-side into turn one and Logano took the lead. As it turned out, it was a lead he held for most of the rest of the day.
· After a round of green-flag pit stops, Logano appeared to be headed for victory when a caution flag came out just before he took the white flag. The sequence set up a green-white-checkered flag shootout to the finish.
· As Logano made a final stop, the Shell-Pennzoil/Hertz team once again performed great service getting Logano out in third place and the first car on four tires.
· As the final green flag waved, Logano fell into line in second place behind race leader Jeff Gordon. Getting a great run off of turn four as he came to the white flag, Logano passed Gordon and set his sights on the checkered flag and his first win of the 2014 season. The win was an important one as it virtually locks Logano into the 2014 Chase for the Sprint Cup.
· Logano led the most laps in the race, pacing the field three times for 108 laps.
· With the victory, the fourth of his Sprint Cup Series career, Logano moved up four spots to fourth in the series standings, just 24 points behind Gordon.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING
JOEY LOGANO, NO. 22 SHELL-PENNZOIL/HERTZ FORD
YOU SEEMED TO BE PRETTY CONFIDENT ALL WEEKEND LONG. DID YOU HAVE A FEELING ABOUT THIS RACE?
“I felt very confident about this race. For some reason I told (crew chief)Todd Gordon, ‘We’re gonna win this week,’ and I was mad when we didn’t get the pole, but I felt like we had a car that could win this thing today.”
YOUR CAR DIDN’T START OFF STRONG, BUT SEEMED TO GET BETTER AS THE RACE WENT ON.
“At the beginning we didn’t, and then Todd and the guys made good adjustments and had good stops all day. And that one longer run I came through and was able to drive up to fifth and get some cautions to be able to get our track position up towards the front. (Running in) clean air means everything in these cars.”
WHAT’S IT MEAN TO FINALLY GET A WIN THIS YEAR AFTER YOU HAVE BEEN SO STRONG AND TO DO IT AT TEXAS?
“It’s been a heck of a season so far. I feel like the Shell-Pennzoil Ford could have been to Victory Lane a couple of times so far, and we’re finally here. I feel like we gave away a couple already this season, so this car is fast. We’re here to be a force all year. I’m so excited I can’t even speak right now. I’m stoked. It’s super cool. Texas Motor Speedway is one of the coolest race tracks. The first time I came here I got my butt handed to me really bad, so to win at this track means a lot.”
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