May 8, 2022: #22: Joey Logano, Team Penske, Shell Pennzoil Ford Mustangat Darlington Raceway in Darlington SC.(HHP/Harold Hinson)
(HHP/Harold Hinson)

NASCAR Nuggets: Joey Logano Sees Positive In Being Booed

Before every NASCAR Cup Series race, the stars of the series are introduced to the fans in the grandstands from a mobile stage in the infield grass.

Almost every weekend, the drivers who receive the most vocal opposition are Kyle Busch and Joey Logano.

The reaction to Logano is likely based in his long and distinguished history of altercations and feuds with his Cup Series competitors.

William Byron became the latest driver added to that list after the Goodyear 400 at Darlington, when Logano bumped Byron out of the way with two laps to go and went on to win. Afterward, Byron called Logano an “idiot” and a “moron.”

The Team Penske driver shrugged the insults off. 

“I’ve been called a lot of things, a lot worse than moron, too,” Logano said afterward. “I just witnessed a lot of it (from fans) when I got out of the car actually. But no, that’s fine. Whatever. Call me what you want.”

One would think facing that negative fan reaction on a week-to-week basis would get ultimately get to an athlete.

Logano views it through the prism of a “society issue.”

“People love to hate more than they love to love,” Logano said Saturday at Kansas Speedway. “You can watch the news and see that all day long. Nothing to do with racing. That’s a problem just the way we are as people. And I’m probably guilty of that as well. But it’s something that it’s harder to do, right? It’s harder to like people.”

However, the 31-year-old Logano actually sees a little bit of a positive fans jeering him.

“I say this all the time. Whether they’re cheering or booing, they’re making noise,” Logano said. “And that means they’re passionate. And passion is what built our sport. That’s the key thing for us is when there’s no cheers or boos for any drivers, we’re in trouble. But the fact that they’re booing or cheering or doing something ,that shows health in our sport. So that’s key. We got to continue to have that.”

So the boos don’t get under his skin even a little?

“Maybe it used to bother me more, but I also see a ton of 22 stuff right now,” Logano said. “I see more yellow and red Shell / Pennzoil stuff than I’ve ever seen in the past. The people who choose to cheer or dislike you (do so) a lot off of you as a competitor, not Joey as a person. So you got to kind of take somethings with a grain of salt, and just understand that for what it is, right? And people choose certain teams over others because of various reasons. But I know I flip the switch when I’m in the race car. I know they’re probably judging off of that. But I also know I have to win races to be around here at all. So the fact that I can flip the switch is a good thing. And I want to really continue to do that.”

JR Motorsports Goes For History

Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Texas Motor Speedway could see some history made and JR Motorsports has two shots to do it.

Justin Allgaier (7) and Josh Berry lead the field around Dover.

The team has won the last three Xfinity races with three different drivers – Josh Berry (Dover), Noah Gragson (Talladega) and Justin Allgaier (Darlington).

If either Sam Mayer or William Byron win Saturday’s race, JR Motorsports will become the first Xfinity Series team to ever win four consecutive races with four different drivers.

It would be the sixth time an organization has won four or more straight races in Xfinity Series competition and JRM would become the fourth team to accomplish the feat, joining: Howard Thomas Racing (1983), RFK Racing (2000) and Joe Gibbs Racing (2008, 2016, 2021). Joe Gibbs Racing holds the record for most consecutive wins in the series at six straight in 2008 (April 5 – May 9).

Unfortunately for JRM, the team has only one victory at Texas in 89 combined starts: Chase Elliott in 2014.

Allmendinger Looks to Extend Top 10 Streak

The start of AJ Allmendinger’s NASCAR Xfinity Series season has been impressive.

The Kaulig Racing driver has earned a top-10 finish in each of the first 11 races of the season. That includes his win in the race at Circuit of the Americas.

That 11-race streak has to be a record, right?

Surprisingly, it’s not even close.

If Allmendinger wants to own the record for most consecutive top 10s to start an Xfinity season, he’ll have to finish 10th or better in the next 13 races.

The record – 23 races – is held by Sam Ard. The two-time Xfinity champion put together his record in 1984. In a 28-race season, Ard failed to finish inside the top 10 only twice, at North Wilkesboro and in the season finale at Rockingham.

Allmendinger ranks fourth on consecutive top 10s to starts a Xfinity Season list behind Ard (23 in 1984), Regan Smith (13 in 2014) and Elliott Sadler (12 in 2018).

TV Ratings

It was another down weekend for the NASCAR Cup Series in TV ratings

Sunday’s race at Kansas Speedway got a 1.43 rating and 2.337 million viewers. That’s down from a 1.62 rating and 2.739 million for last year’s event.

The race was on Fox Sports 1. The next event on Fox itself is the Coca-Cola 600.

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