Logano Ready to Move On
By: Robbie Mays - @robbiemays | MRN.com on March 17, 2017 | 7:15 P.M. EST
“I look at Kyle as one of the drivers I had the best relationship with. It will take a little bit of time. That’s just part of it." (Photo: Getty Images)
AVONDALE, Ariz. - Joey Logano is ready to move on following last Sunday’s post-race scuffle with Kyle Busch at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
And if Logano needs any more motivation to put last week behind him - he’s racing this weekend at the track where he claimed his most recent win, which propelled him into the Championship 4 in last season’s finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
“Winning here, the amount of pressure that was on that weekend and how important it was to race for the championship the next week at Miami meant so much to be able to do that,” Logano said. “I was re-watching the race on the flight out here yesterday and my hands were sweating and I knew the outcome. I was still on the edge of my seat.”
But the story of the week - the fight last Sunday - was obviously still on Logano’s mind when he arrived at Phoenix Friday morning and continued to be as he met with Busch and NASCAR prior to Friday’s opening Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice.
Logano said he talked with Busch earlier in the week but NASCAR wanted the two to come together one more time before cars hit the track.
“NASCAR just wanted to make sure we talked in person. It was a great play by NASCAR. I took it on my own will to call and talk to him before hand,” Logano said. “To be able to talk to him face to face I think it helped.
“As far as leading into it, my plan was just to go into it and be honest. That’s the best way I know how to handle situations."
Logano was able to analyze the on-track incident which led to the pit road altercation. After making contact on the back straightaway at Las Vegas on the final lap last Sunday, Logano admitted he had a poor entry into Turn 3 and had to reduce his speed and got loose in the corner.
“That's my mistake," Loagno said. "I tried to stay on the bottom, my car didn’t stay there. There could be six or seven reasons why that didn’t happen. The fact of the matter is it happened. I hate it happened.
“Was it a big mistake? Not to start, but it had a big reaction. It’s hard racing the last lap. We’re racing to the checkered flag. I have no reason to do anything on purpose that’s for sure for fourth place. That would make no sense."
Logano said with all the times he and Busch have raced each other over the last nine years, this is the first issue the two have had.
“I look at Kyle as one of the drivers I had the best relationship with,” Logano said. “It will take a little bit of time. That’s just part of it. We’ve never had an issue and it wasn’t intentional.”
Logano said his experience dealing with the on-track incident with Matt Kenseth during the 2015 fall race at Martinsville Speedway helped him work through his most recent issues.
“I didn’t handle it the greatest. I was able to learn a lot from that. The best thing is to over communicate. Communication is key. Whether it’s what the person wants to hear or not. At least just putting your thoughts out there, I don’t think any harm can come of that.”
With the meeting with Busch behind him, Logano is ready to focus solely on winning at Phoenix this weekend. He’s relying on a pre-season test at Phoenix to help get him up to speed quickly this weekend.
“We were out here for a couple days testing. It’s really nice to have that to be able to work on your cars,” Logano said. “Today we were able to unload with a pretty quick car in race trim and that’s because we were able to test a lot and try some things.
“A lot of times you can’t take something you learn at a test for gospel. When you come back the track changes. You can’t completely commit to what you learn there but it definitely gives you a lot of direction."