Just last weekend, Joey Logano uttered the words “if you had told me before the year, running a part-time schedule that we could win eight races, I would have probably have told you that you were crazy.” And those words were uttered while sitting in the media center at Charlotte Motor Speedway, following Logano’s eighth NASCAR Nationwide Series victory of the season. Logano led the most laps and once again came from behind, stretching his fuel mileage and earning his eighth win of the year. Logano’s wins have come in just 18 starts this season, giving him a 44.4-percent winning percentage on the year. Logano won his second-straight race (Dover, Charlotte) and his third in the last four races he’s competed in (Bristol, Dover, Charlotte). He has also won seven of his last 12 NNS starts dating back to Talladega. Logano has also led laps in 13 of his 18 races this season and leads the series with 862 laps spent out front of the field.
LOGANO HAS “NEED FOR SPEED” AND BECOMES THE “MOST WANTED”: GameStop will be back on the side of the No.18 Toyota this weekend in Kansas and will feature the new Need For Speed Most Wanted videogame. Criterion Games is reimagining the Need for Speed franchise’s fan favorite and bestselling game, Need for Speed Most Wanted. Players will be able to outrun the cops, outdrive friends, and outsmart rivals to become the Most Wanted. Discover and drive nearly any vehicle right from the start and leave your mark in a vast, connected Open World city of Fairhaven. With a police force gunning to take you down, you’ll need to make split second decisions and use the open world to your advantage. Take the competition to be Most Wanted online and experience the most socially connected game of this generation. Instantly challenge your friends and prove your driving skill in action packed Multiplayer Speedlists. With non-stop competition, endless rewards and deep variety at the heart of the experience there’s always a way to win, whatever your play style or abilities. Need for Speed Most Wanted will be available Oct. 30, 2012 in North America for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, PC, iOS and Android. Start Some Trouble. Leave Your Mark. Become Most Wanted.
STILL GUNNING FOR OWNER’S CHAMPIONSHIP: With 29 of 33 races on the NASCAR Nationwide Series schedule complete, the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 team remains in the lead in the Owner’s Championship point standings. The team has a 19-point lead on the No. 2 Richard Childress Racing team and a 32-point lead on Roush Fenway Racing’s No. 6 team. So far this season, the No. 18 team has earned six wins (all coming with Logano behind the wheel), five runner-up finishes, 18 top-fives, 24 top-10s and four pole awards. Joe Gibbs Racing has claimed three NASCAR Nationwide Series Owner’s Championships in the last four seasons, with the No. 20 team winning in 2008 and the No. 18 team winning the title in 2009 and 2010.
“IF” HE WAS RUNNING FOR POINTS: Even though a lot of people don’t like the “if” scenarios, sometimes they can show just show strong of a season a particular driver is having and put it in a greater context. Unofficially, “if” Logano was still being given points in the NASCAR Nationwide Series races he’s competed in this season, he would have scored 719 points (including bonus points) thus far this year. That would put the 22-year-old 10th in the Nationwide Series point standings despite running 11 fewer races than the driver that currently sits 10th. That 719 points over the course of 18 races averages out to just under 40 points per race Logano has earned in his 2012 Nationwide Series starts. “If” Logano was running a full season and averaging the same 40 points per start, he would have scored 1,160 points thus far this season, would be the series point leader and would have a 64-point lead heading into the final four races the season.
LOGANO NOW ADDING UP THE TRACKS: With his win in Charlotte, Logano has now won Nationwide Series races at 12 different tracks over the course of his career. Heading into this season, Logano had won races at Kentucky, Kansas, Chicagoland, Daytona, California and Nashville. This year, he has added Dover, Talladega, Charlotte, Bristol, Darlington and Michigan to his conquered list. Kansas, the site of this weekend’s Nationwide Series event, has been good to Logano in the past, with one pole, two victories and four top-10s in four starts at the track.
THE RACE: The Kansas Lottery 300 at Kansas Speedway (Kansas City, KS; 1.5-mile oval) is set for Saturday, October 20, 2012. The race will be broadcast on ESPN at 3:00 p.m. ET, with radio coverage on MRN.
JOEY LOGANO ON KANSAS: “I said it last week and I’ll say it again. If you asked me before the start of the season that running a part-time schedule and thinking we could go out there and win eight races I would have told you that you were crazy. I have total faith in my team and I think my guys are the best in the Nationwide Series garage, but this is a tough series with a lot of good Nationwide Series regulars and a lot of good Cup guys that run a bunch of races. So to think that this season we have been able to win eight races in just 18 starts is pretty amazing. I really say that it’s a testament to Adam Stevens (crew chief) and all of the guys on the team. They build me great stuff, they make the right changes, the pit crew is one of the best in the business and you add it all together and it makes for a great team. I feel like we have a shot for a couple of more wins this year.
“Kansas is one of my better tracks. In fact, heading into this year other than Kentucky, it was the only track on the schedule that I’ve been able to win at more than once. So I’m looking forward to going back there. I feel like we’ve made great strides in our Nationwide Series program on the 1.5-mile tracks. In fact, someone told me that last weekend’s win at Charlotte was the first time that we’ve won on a 1.5-mile track at JGR since the new Nationwide COT cars came out. That just goes to show you the strides we’ve made. So Kansas should be good. I feel like we were good at Chicagoland and we can take some of that to this weekend.”
CREW CHIEF ADAM STEVENS ON KANSAS: “This weekend will be a completely different race track and tire combination than the old Kansas, so you really have to wonder how much, if any, of your notes will be able to transfer over. The track will change dramatically from the time we unload on Thursday until the time the race starts on Saturday. We have an extra four hours of practice on Thursday which will be beneficial. I don’t expect the groove in the race to be very wide since it’s a repave which means qualifying and pit stops will be crucial. Fortunately, we have one of the best qualifiers and one of the best pit crews out there. This race, like last week, could easily come down to a fuel mileage race so pit strategy will be a factor. I also feel like, with the repave, track time will be important so the Cup guys might have a little advantage this weekend.”