Ford Performance NSCS Notes and Quotes
Bad Boy Off Road 300 – New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Friday, September 23, 2016
Joey Logano, driver of the No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford, has two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series wins at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. A third this weekend would guarantee him a spot in the Round of 12. He spoke about his team and their chances before today’s practice session.
JOEY LOGANO – No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford Fusion –
SPORTS FIGURES HAVE TAKEN A MORE PROMINENT ROLE IN DIFFERENT SOCIAL ISSUES. WHAT IS THE ROLE OF ATHLETES, IN YOUR OPINION?
“I think any athlete or public figure takes on a responsibility when you sit down here and talk to you guys, or at any point. There’s a lot of people that you can influence in good ways or bad ways, and I feel like you should know that. There are a lot of athletes and public figures that don’t realize that about the reaction they can make across the country or the world in a lot of cases by just a couple of words. I feel like that should be somehow taught. I believe we all should be entitled to our opinions. That’s A-OK, maybe some of the ways that it’s done is not the best way possible, but I personally believe when I sit down here I know the influence that I can have on young eyes watching us that are very fragile at the time that they could go a lot of different ways.
“You want to be a positive member of society and I think that’s something that I try to preach all the time is that, hey, I want to positively impact somebody’s life. I think ways like we’re doing it today with MPAL, is there a better way of doing it? I don’t think so. I don’t know a better way. Maybe there is, but I don’t know a better way, I’ll tell you that much. I feel like if you can find some great organizations like we have today and impact people in that way, and use this platform that we have as a public figure to positively impact people, that’s the way to do it. I don’t honestly believe in a lot of other ways that other athletes are doing it right now.”
THE INDY CAR TEAM AT PENSKE WRAPPED UP THE CHAMPIONSHIP LAST WEEK. ANY PRESSURE ON YOU GUYS NOW OR ANY ASSETS BECOME AVAILABLE NOW THAT THEIR SEASON IS OVER?
“They finished one-two-three, so holy moly. I don’t know if you want to call it added pressure, but I think there’s plenty on us already and I think we are better under pressure. I like that. Fifty years for Team Penske. You guys well know that, but for them to do that on the 50th Anniversary is very special and it’s really cool to be somewhat a part of that. I feel like I’m part of the team – even the Indy Car team. There are a lot of guys that are cross-pollinated throughout our company. Does it open up some resources? Maybe a little bit here and there, maybe more time for a lot of guys like maybe the machine shop opens up a little bit.
“I’m probably not the best person to answer a lot of those questions, but it is a motivational thing. I think it’s great to see that. It makes the NASCAR guys want to go out here and continue this awesome year that Team Penske has had so far, and Brad and I have a great shot at it. What if we finished one-two at Homestead? How cool would that be? We have an amazing opportunity to do that. We’ve got a long ways to go to get there, but we can do it.”
WHAT IS THE PRESSURE LIKE IN RACE TWO OF THESE ROUNDS IF YOU HAVEN’T WON THE OPENING RACE?
“I just approach it the same way I would any other race. If you didn’t have a good race last week, then the pressure is added – no doubt. But we finished second last week and scored some good points. We talk about this round as being base hits and don’t have to do anything crazy. We did that exactly last week, so we’ll just come up here and do the same exact thing. If something happens, something happens and we’ll approach Dover in a different way, but, right now, let’s go out here and if we can win the race, let’s win the race. If not, let’s try to top-5 it and that will give us a good sense of security heading into Dover. It’s one race at a time, one step at a time. For us personally, the 22 team had a good weekend last week. The pressure is probably the same as what it was in Chicago. We just have to do what we know how to do.”
HOW MUCH RELIEF IS IT TO WIN A RACE AND NOT WORRY ABOUT WHETHER IT’S RACE TWO OR THREE IN A ROUND?
“It just feels good to win no matter what. It’s so hard to win, so when you’re able to accomplish that feat it’s an awesome feeling. For me, New Hampshire would be just an awesome place to win, just mainly because it’s my home track – even more than the Chase implications at this point. If we had a bad race last week, then the win would mean a lot more, but let’s say you have a second and a first, the win is not what’s gonna get you through, it’s gonna be the points that go along with it. The win and how much it relaxes you is different for each round and as you get further along with it, we talk about it plenty of times. If you can win at Martinsville, you have a couple weeks just to figure out how you’re gonna win Homestead. That win means a lot. If you’re in a do-or-die moment in the third race, that win means a lot. And a lot of times if you’re able to get a win before Talladega, that win means a lot. There are certain ones that stand out and are probably more important than others, and there are certain ones that if you can just get a solid day are very important as well.”
ARE YOU PRETTY SATISFIED WITH THE STATE OF THE 22 TEAM RIGHT NOW?
“Yes, of course. I thought last weekend presented an amazing opportunity for something to go either way. When I say that I mean the caution that came out right at the end. We had a pretty good race car. When we come down for the green-white-checker and come down pit road we all call that that money stop and they went down there and beat one of the best pit crews on pit road in the 11 team. They beat them off pit road, which ultimately gave us the outside starting position behind Martin and we were able to follow through and come home with a second-place finish. If it wasn’t for that pit stop, we wouldn’t have been in position for a great finish like we had. That pressure and the way you handle it is, to me, the definition of a true athlete. There are a lot of athletes that can practice really well and when it becomes game time and you put the pressure on them, it goes the wrong way. And then there’s an athlete that you put the pressure on and they get better, and that’s what I saw in the 22 team last weekend, and I couldn’t be more proud to be a part of that.”
WITH WHAT’S GOING ON IN CHARLOTTE DO YOU GUYS FEEL AN EMOTIONAL ATTACHMENT TO IT? DO YOU FEEL LIKE IT’S YOUR COMMUNITY AND HAS THERE BEEN ANY TALK ABOUT YOU GUYS CAN DO?
“I’m not 100 percent sure what we can do. Obviously, we’re trying to do things here today, but, yeah, there’s an emotional reaction. A lot of times when you see things like this happen it’s in a different city and you don’t recognize where it’s at, but when you see the NASCAR building getting vandalized and you see areas of the city that you know very well with just crazy things happening it makes you sick to your gut. You don’t know what to do and you kind of feel helpless. All we can do really is just say some prayers and hope that eventually everything calms down and everyone is able to come to some kind of peace at the end of this thing, and we can move on and move forward and make our world better. Right now, it’s a scary situation. To me, I don’t really know how to explain how I feel about it, but I know one thing is when I see buildings getting vandalized and things like that happening it’s unacceptable in my opinion and we need to figure out how to control that and do it in a peaceful way, and I think we’d all come to a better understanding, for sure, of the situation.”