- Joey Logano’s win is his fifth with Ford Racing and seventh of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career.
- In addition, it’s the first Chase victory of his career and second overall at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
- Ford Racing’s 12 wins this season is the most for the manufacturer since 2005 (16).
- The win is Ford’s 26th Chase win and 630th all-time series victory.
Ford Finishing Order:
1st – Joey Logano
6th – Aric Almirola
7th – Brad Keselowski
16th – Greg Biffle
17th – Carl Edwards
24th – Marcos Ambrose
27th – David Gilliland
39th – Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
42nd – David Ragan
JOEY LOGANO – No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford Fusion – VICTORY LANE INTERVIEW – DID YOU KNOW THAT FOUR TIRES WOULD BE THE CALL OF THE DAY? “No, I thought we gave it away at that point, but four tires were good and we had some good restarts and were able to get ourselves back up there. We worked hard. This is my home race track, the coolest place to win for me. I could never pick a better race track to win. I watched my first Cup race here when I was five and I won that other Cup race here, but I just felt like I had to win one the right way here, and this means so much. I’ve got to thank all the boys at Team Penske. We’re doing what we’ve got to do to win this thing right now – both teams are – and I’m proud of that. This is my home track so it means so much to me.”
WHAT WENT THROUGH YOUR MIND WHEN THE CAUTION CAME OUT WITH FOUR TO GO? “I had a lot of things I can’t say right now that came to my mind, but we were able to have some good restarts. The guys did a good job setting this thing up and gave me something to win with today. I went to sleep last night hoping for a top five. That would be good for me at this track because it’s not one of my key places, and that’s why it means so much to win here.”
HOW DOES IT SOUND TO BE GOING TO THE NEXT ROUND? “It feels good to go into the next one. We’ve got to keep doing what we’re doing though. We’ve got to keep our eye on the prize and think about the big trophy at the end.”
BRAD KESELOWSKI – No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion – WHAT WAS THE DIFFERENCE THE LAST FEW RESTARTS? “I don’t know. We had a lot of adversity. I made a few mistakes that got us behind, but Paul Wolfe and the crew did a great job of getting us back in position. I was kind of an up-and-down day and I guess we ended on an OK note. We finished seventh, but I was definitely looking for more than that. We fought hard and it was a good, solid day.” THAT ONE RESTART WHERE YOU WERE THE LEADER AND LOST IT. WHAT HAPPENED THERE? “I got ran into. I think that’s pretty self-explanatory, but I don’t know if I was the fastest car.” TWO PENSKE CARS ARE IN THE NEXT ROUND. WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THAT? “It’s great for everyone at Team Penske. We certainly have a lot to be proud of, but there’s still a lot of work to do.”
ARIC ALMIROLA – No. 43 Smithfield Ford Fusion – “We cut it down to a realistic possibility going to Dover. I think were nine or 10 points out of 12th, so that’s manageable. If we went to Dover 28 points out, we might as well go ahead and just throw in the towel, but that’s exactly what we needed. I said all week the best thing we can do if we can’t win, we need to go and try to run top five. We ran sixth and we’ve got to try and put pressure on those other guys. We’re down but we’re not out. I said that after Chicago. We’ll go to Loudon and Dover and give them everything we’ve got and wherever it shakes out it shakes out. We can only control what we can control and today we did that and did a good job and finished sixth. We’ll do the same thing at Dover and we’ll see what happens.” YOU WERE RUNNING IN THE TOP 10 AND THEN LOST TRACK POSITION LATE. HOW DID YOU GET IT BACK? “A couple cars spun and I missed some wrecks and got one good restart. I think on that one restart I gained seven or eight spots. That was probably the biggest difference, but everything worked in our favor once we lost that track position. We had a few yellows, so it worked out. Last week it didn’t work out in our favor, but this week it did.”
CARL EDWARDS – No. 99 Aflac Ford Fusion – “It was a pretty tough day. We’re still eighth in points, which is good. Now we’ve just got to go to Dover and survive and do a good job to make it to the next round while still working on our cars. My crew did a good job. Jimmy did a good job. It was a tough race and just one little mistake you wreck, so it’s pretty crazy.”
RICKY STENHOUSE JR. – No. 17 EcoPower Ford Fusion – “I blew a left-front. We were all just racing really, really hard on that restart. Everybody was bouncing off each other. I don’t know who hit my left-front, but it got a fender rub and just blew the left-front going down the front straightaway. I was trying to get it slowed down as much as I could, but it wasn’t gonna turn so I just hit the wall.” ANY IDEA IT WOULD GO DOWN? “Every now and then it would quit smoking, so I thought we were getting it cleared out, and then it was obviously still rubbing and it blew, so it didn’t get cleared enough.” IS THIS RASH OF CAUTIONS LATE IN THE RACE A PRODUCT OF THE CHASE AND EVERYONE IS GETTING ALL THEY CAN? “No, I think it’s a product of New Hampshire. It’s really tough to restart on the inside, so the cars that are restarting on the inside are trying to put people three-wide, four-wide, so it makes the outside at a disadvantage. They’re doing a good job at it. I was up in the fourth lane when I restarted in the second lane, so it’s difficult on the restarts. It’s just like the Truck race yesterday and typical for here.”
DAVID RAGAN – No. 34 Taco Bell Ford Fusion – “It was unfortunate. We made our car a little bit better and it looked like the 51 and 78 were both mad and they were running over each other. They kind of shot up the race track and I ran over Martin with my left-front and that just kind of shot me up, so it’s unfortunate but that’s the way things go sometimes.”
JOEY LOGANO PRESS CONFERENCE
JOEY LOGANO – No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford Fusion – “A lot went into this one, that’s for sure. I’ll just take you back to when we unloaded we were OK and then yesterday in practice we were so-so. I didn’t feel like we were great and towards the end of practice we made a couple changes and found some speed, started seventh today and was able to work our way up a little bit in the beginning of the race. I felt like, ‘OK, ‘we’ve got something to contend for a victory with,’ if everything worked out right and we ran around top-three most of the day. We came in and put two tires on and a couple cars stayed out, and at that point I had a bad restart third and another bad restarted when I was fifth and that put us sixth or so when the caution came out. Todd put four tires on it and at that point I thought he was crazy because we came out 16th, and I was like, ‘Well, let’s just try to salvage something out of this and try to get a top-10 or top-5,’ because our goal coming into the race was to get to the next round. We’ve got to get to the next round to win the championship. That’s our ultimate goal is to win the championship and we had to get through this day the best we could and had some really good restarts. Before I knew it I was sitting third and was like, ‘Huh, I’ve got a shot at winning this thing.’ I’ve got 30 lap newer tires than anybody and we were able to capitalize with that, and then of course it was caution after caution after caution and that was making me nervous for sure. I don’t know if Todd and Walt were, but I know I was and we were able to capitalize and have some good restarts and be here in Victory Lane. To me, this is almost like Daytona. It’s such a special place for me. I watched my first Cup race here when I was five and started my first one and won my first one. After the week I had in Connecticut doing some really cool fundraisers, to top it off with a victory is really neat.”
TODD GORDON, Crew Chief – No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford Fusion – “It was a strategy race it seemed like. The first two-thirds of the race played out the way I would expect it to, two tires and let fuel dictate it. Like Joey said, we hung around the top five I think for a large portion of it, but the caution came there in the early 200s. It was short of our fuel window, but you could sense that everybody was coming, so we came and took two and put fuel in it, but we were short and we weren’t in a position to finish the race. We stayed out the next caution that came because what led up to that was multiple cautions and I wanted to see how many laps of caution we’d get, but we had one we stayed out and then it went green for a little while and caution came back out with 52 or 53 to go and we were short. The last thing we needed to do was run out of gas trying to stretch something here and take a strong points position and a strong points day and throw it out the window and have to go to Dover scrapping for making it through, so we took the opportunity to come down pit road and put Joey on offense. I think he’s an awesome offensive player, so we put four tires on and put fuel in it and let him do his thing. I think it was awesome to watch him restart 16th and I think in four laps he was sixth. High, wide and handsome. That was pretty awesome to watch on the top rolling around there, and we just put him in a position where he could do what he’s really good at and that’s wheeling a race car and not having to back up, but let him go forward.”
WALT CZARNECKI, Vice Chairman, Team Penske – “What happened today and what you’ve seen from Team Penske and the Shell/Pennzoil Ford and the Miller Lite Ford the last couple of weeks, I mean three wins in a row and four out of the last five races really is a testament to how this team brings good race cars. They’re building good race cars at the shop. They’re bringing good race cars to the race track and then Todd and Paul and the team are executing at the race track and taking advantage of I like to say the 35-inch, 35-ounce bat. They’re swinging it hard, so we’re trying to give them the resources and they’re doing with it, so we’re really gratified with where we are. Someone asked me here just a minute ago and said, ‘Gee, this must make you feel pretty good with both cars advancing to the next round.’ I said, ‘Let me tell you something about this group. We’re worried about Dover right now.’ What happened here a half-an-hour ago is great. Again, congratulations. But the team is worrying about Dover right now, so that’s our intent, one race at a time and that’s the way we’re gonna proceed.”
JOEY LOGANO CONTINUED – DOES THIS INCREASE CONFIDENCE? “I would think so. It definitely didn’t go the other way. You get a win like that. This is personally I consider my worst race track. That’s terrible to say because it’s my home race track, but I’ve always struggled when I come here. To be able to win at your worst race track that makes you feel like you can win anywhere. It’s just special to be able to do that and the confidence is high with the 22 team right now and all of Team Penske. We all feel like we’ve got some championships to win this year, not only on the Cup side but on the Nationwide side also. Obviously, we’ve already got one with IndyCar so we’re just trying to catch up to them.”
TODD GORDON CONTINUED – “It’s obviously a big deal to have a win in the Chase. I think it only, as Joey said, it doesn’t hurt your position it adds a little confidence, but this whole race team I think has had it and understands it and believes it. I really thought last week at Chicagoland everybody did an awesome job because we had an off weekend. We were slow. We were off and we finished fourth with it and we came here and were off a little bit, like Joey said, in first practice – not a ton, but a little bit – and nobody gave up and this whole Shell/Pennzoil team just kept digging and working on it. By the time we got done with happy hour I felt like we had a pretty good race car, and it definitely was every bit of what I thought it would be.”
JOEY LOGANO CONTINUED – DID YOU THINK YOU HAD A GOOD CHANCE TO WIN WITH ALL OF THOSE LATE CAUTIONS? “Restarts you never know what’s gonna happen, but Todd gives me a really good car that I can be aggressive with on restarts and I think that’s a big deal because the more in control I am the more aggressive I can be, and the more aggressive you are in restarts the more you’re in control of the restart. You don’t want to be the guy going the wrong way. Todd said a second ago about being on the offense and not on the defense. It’s not just putting tires on that makes it like that, it’s having a car that’s capable of running in traffic and it’s something we work on a lot in practice and making sure that we have something that’s gonna be good in traffic and that can restart well. We’ve seen it time and time again with these Sprint Cup races that it’s most likely gonna come down to a late-race caution, so you’ve got to be able to execute the restart and the first five laps around traffic. That takes a good car and kind of knowing what to expect and trying to play it out in your head before it happens.”
TODD GORDON CONTINUED – “The short runs are good and Joey is strong at it. He’s able to be aggressive and he takes every bit he can. I think the bigger piece is the confidence of the late-race restarts was we’re in a better position on fuel and tires. It kind of checks you up to make that call with 52 to go to come and take four tires because we gave up a bunch of track position, and I watched our teammate early in the race not be able to recover as quickly as Joey was and his ability on restarts got him back that. But I felt like once we got to the point where we were top-three we were in a really good position because he could be aggressive on restarts. We had tires to do it. We were at an advantage with our tire and fuel situation.”
JOEY LOGANO CONTINUED -- HOW DOES IT FEEL WHEN YOU HAVE A CAR THAT RESPONDS TO YOUR INPUT? “It’s nice when you say something about the race car and Todd is able to adjust it and fix it and it gets better. That’s what we get paid to do. When we go to practice it’s, ‘OK, where we are on speed and what do we need to be better.’ We talk about it and be methodical about our adjustments and go from there. I think Todd does a great job. Todd doesn’t just make changes to make changes. I know that’s how I would be if I was a crew chief. I’d be like, ‘Yeah, yeah, just do that and do that and it will be fine and go for it.’ But Todd really understands and takes the time to talk it out with me, which I think is very important to dig out the deep information and then think about what the adjustment is gonna do and what the reaction to other parts and pieces of the car is gonna be when he does it, and understand why it changes a certain thing. I think that’s what makes him very strong as a crew chief, and that’s why I wouldn’t be a crew chief because I would just go for it. So together we work out.”
TODD GORDON CONTINUED – “The relationship there, we both have the attributes that fit our position. We’ve got a bunch of guys that really support the program as well. It’s not just me and it’s not just Joey. It’s a testament to what the engineers and the car chief and all the mechanics did. We didn’t turn a screw on the car all day. All we did was play with air-pressure, so that’s a rare weekend and a good one for everybody today.”
JOEY LOGANO CONTINUED – HOW MUCH SWEETER WAS IT TO WIN THIS RACE TODAY COMPARED TO THE LAST TIME? “I didn’t know where Victory Lane was here actually, so I just made another lap. I said, ‘I’m just gonna keep going around.’ I didn’t have any rear tires on it. I think it drug the frame rails off the car, but I just didn’t want to come in. I wanted to stay out there. This is, like I said, how big of a win this is for me. I never got out in front of all the fans on the front straightaway before but it was just too cool. I couldn’t give up that opportunity. Then I just wanted to keep going, so I just kept making laps out there. There might not be much left of the car, but it was really special to win here and I wanted to make it last as long as I could.”
WALT CZARNECKI CONTINUED – WHERE IS ROGER TODAY? “He’s traveling out of the country on business, but I spoke to him and he’s aware of what happened.”
JOEY LOGANO CONTINUED -- HAS THIS TRACK ALWAYS BEEN AN OUTSIDE LINE RESTART TRACK OR DID WEATHER CONDITIONS PLAY A ROLE? “As far as I can remember, yes, the outside has been the preferred lane, but it’s kind of sketchy. It is where you can get the momentum and most likely you come out in the lead, but the way you get in the corners here, it’s so flat just one lane down that the inside car gets loose really easily, so it’s dangerous being out there, but it is the preferred lane and that’s why when I was in the lane I did everything I could to make sure I had a good enough restart that I had position on him, that I didn’t have to race him through turn one. That was my big goal on every one was just getting through the gear box as quick as I could.”
WHAT HAPPENED ON THE RESTART WHEN YOU AND BRAD WERE TOGETHER AND HARVICK PASSED YOU GUYS FOR THE LEAD? “It’s exactly what I just talked about. I got on the inside and we were both racing for the lead and I got loose and I started chasing it up. Thank goodness he held onto it and we held onto it and we both ended up with good days out of it. The important thing is that both of us have moved on to the next round and we can keep racing and working together and trying to win the championship.”
DID YOU THINK YOUR SHOT AT THE WIN WAS GONE AT THAT POINT? “No, it’s not over until it’s over. I’ve seen these races change a lot in the late laps. No, it’s never over until it’s over. If I’m running fifth with four to go, I still think I can win this thing a lot of times. I think that’s the attitude you’ve got to have. If you get a late-race caution it’s like, ‘I’ve got a shot at it. It might take a miracle, but I’ve got a shot,’ and that’s all I can ask for.”
WHAT’S YOUR ATTITUDE GOING TO DOVER? “Dover is a crazy race track. It’s so much fun to go around it. Right now, my focus is on Texas though. We’ve got a test down there the next two days and we’ve got to make sure we make that test everything we can do out of it and make sure we’re ready for it when we get to Texas and try to win down there again. Right now, I’m focused on that and then we’ll think about Dover. You talked about being relaxed, it’s not really the case. Walt said earlier our next focus is the next race and we need to keep doing what we’ve been doing. We focus hard on each and every race track and we want to go to Dover. Knowing that we’re in the next round is nice, but we want to go out there and win. We want to keep the momentum going and you never know what’s gonna happen later on in this Chase. There could be a time that we don’t make it to the next round and we’ve got to revert back to points. It would be pretty nice to have a solid finish at Dover to try and get a good, solid points position at the end of the year. Our goal is to win the championship though, so we have to get from round to round, but just because we’re in the next one doesn’t mean we’re gonna take an off weekend next week.”
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