Monday, Nov 28

Ford Performance NASCAR: Joey Logano Puts His Ford Mustang on the Pole for Roval Race

FORD QUALIFYING RESULTS:

1st – Joey Logano

5th – Austin Cindric

6th – Ryan Blaney

11th – Michael McDowell

12th – Cole Custer

17th – Chase Briscoe

21st – Chris Buescher

22nd – Kevin Harvick

23rd – Harrison Burton

27th – Joey Hand

31st – Brad Keselowski

32nd – Todd Gilliland

35th – JJ Yeley

36th – Loris Hezemans

37th – Aric Almirola

38th – Josh Williams

 

JOEY LOGANO, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford MustangHOW WAS THAT LAP?  “It was OK.  I felt like I screwed up the final chicane here.  I screwed up the first run and made it through and I screwed up half as bad the second time trying to adjust but not over-adjust and I underadjusted myself at least, but the Shell/Pennzoil Mustang has some speed in it obviously.  It was really good through the rest of the racetrack.  Starting up front is nice.  Hopefully, we can do what we need to do this weekend.  Our job is to get into the next round and we’ll figure out what we need from here, but this is a great starting spot, for sure.  We’ve got a good pit stall and we just need to try to keep that track position.  It’s pretty sketchy when you lose your track position here, so we’ll try to keep it.”

 

CONGRATULATIONS ON THE POLE.  “Thanks, it was great.  We’ve got a great Shell/Pennzoil Mustang here.  There’s nothing like getting the pole.  It feels so good.  These road courses are always tough to do that because you’ve got so many corners to screw up.  I got most of them right, all but this one right in front of the grandstands that everyone probably got to see, but the rest of them were decent.  A great car and it’s nice to be starting towards the front.”

 

TRACK POSITION IS IMPORTANT ON A ROAD COURSE.  “Yes.  It’s nice to get that starting spot, but there are a lot of things that can happen on the Roval.  There’s a lot of strategy options and a lot of different things can happen, so we’ve got to just take a second and figure out what our game plan is gonna be for tomorrow.  The good thing is we’ve got a fast car.  Even in race trim the car is fast, so we’re in a good spot.”

 

POLE-WINNING PRESS CONFERENCE

 

JOEY LOGANO, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford MustangHOW WERE YOUR LAPS OUT THERE?  “My lap was pretty good.  I screwed up the first lap in the final chicane under the frontstretch.  That’s our first corner we get to with the alternative start-finish line and you have a whole lap to try and make up for your mistake.  The second lap I only screwed it up half as bad, so I made some gains there.  Overall, I’m pretty proud of our Shell/Pennzoil Mustang team.  They brought a really good race car.  It seems like all the Penske cars are pretty quick as well, so that’s a good encouraging sign, especially as important as the Roval is this week for all of us to move onto the next round.  It’s a nice starting spot.  That’s all it is, just a starting spot.  We’ve got to execute the race and ultimately make sure we get onto the next round.”

 

AUSTIN IS RIGHT ON THE CUT LINE.  HOW HARD IS IT TO BE IN HIS POSITION?  “I think with the 24 penalty back he’s just below it, but he’s close.  It’s tough no matter what position you’re in.  The only spot that you feel more comfortable as that cushion gets bigger and you feel more desperate the further you are behind it.  It’s an interesting place to live when you think about it, especially how you run this race.  When you have a cutoff race as a road course, it makes it pretty tricky on how you’re gonna call this race.  Every crew chief right now is wondering, ‘Do we need stage points?  Do we go for stage points?  If I take stage points, how far back is it gonna cycle me back in the field?  Am I gonna restart 20th?  Am I gonna restart 30th, 15th?  I don’t know.’  Every crew chief in the playoffs right now is thinking about that, not to mention the guys that aren’t in the playoffs that still have reasons to race for points, so it makes it a really hard call for the crew chiefs here on what defines success for the day.  I think that’s the first question you have to ask – what defines success?  Is that winning the race?  Is it getting through to the next round?  Is it scoring max points?  What does it look like?  And that changes throughout the race, I think, sometimes depending on what your competitors are up to.”

 

DOES HAVING THE POLE CHANGE HOW YOU APPROACH THE RACE?  “We’ve had conversations, lots of them.  I don’t think we have any decisions made.  We just got done qualifying, so I haven’t talked to him since I got out of the car, really.  So, I’ll talk to him tonight and see what he thinks and we’ll probably think on it more tomorrow and have an A and a B plan and see where we end up.”

 

WHAT DID YOU LEARN IN THE MEETING TODAY WITH NASCAR AND DO YOU FEEL ANY BETTER AFTER THE MEETING THAN YOU DID BEFORE?  “Yeah, I feel much better.  I feel like the meeting was very open and honest, which I feel like was necessary for all the drivers to get some things off their chest and their real concerns of what we’ve been going through and the experiences from inside the car.  The frustrating part is it took way too long to have that meeting.  That meeting should have happened Monday after Kurt’s crash, not waiting until Alex had his crash and at least hear us out.  I’m not saying they weren’t working on it after Kurt’s crash, but the communication in person is so important.  You guys know.  You’re sitting here.  We used to do Zoom media and can you tell me that when you did all those Zoom calls that it was a good as being in person?  No, you can’t say those interviews are worth a crap compared to being in person.  And it’s the same thing when you’re talking about your life in a race car.  It’s a little bit more important than that and we should be in person having those meetings a lot, not when we need to but before we need to, and I think those messages were heard loud and clear.  There is a plan to try to help the rear impacts, as you guys know, but we need to stay focused on the rest of the car as well.  There are a lot of other spots on the car we want to make better as well.”

 

ARE YOU WORRIED ABOUT REAR IMPACTS HERE?  “You just have to go race when it’s time to go racing.  Yeah, is the possibility there for injury?  It always is.  It’s a race car.  There’s some kind of chance I’m gonna take driving home from here, so you try to assess the risk before you take it and try to do the right things that you can control before you jump in the race car.  That’s your head surround, your helmet, your HANS.  The things I can control I need to be ready for and do, and then at that point we need to keep communicating to NASCAR and their engineers in designing a car that accepts impact better.”

 

WAS THE REST OF THE GARAGE A LEVEL 9 OR 10 BEFORE THIS MEETING COMPARED TO HARVICK AND HAMLIN, WHO WERE A LEVEL 10?  “We need to hold them honest now.  We got a meeting out of it and I hope that’s not why we had the meeting is because a couple drivers got fired up in the media.  I hope that’s not how we make change in our sport.  I hope that’s not what we do.  I think we’re better than that.  I hope we’re better than that, but, like I said, sometimes your emotions will get, I don’t want to say the best of you, but sometimes you have to act out a little bit to make change happen and make sure you’re heard.  It seemed like it definitely made something happen.”

 

DO YOU GET A SENSE AND MAYBE IT’S TOO EARLY, BUT HAS ANYTHING BEEN QUELLED?  HAS EVERYONE CALMED DOWN A LITTLE BIT?  “It will be calm when the car is fixed.”

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