In the Pits
Teen driver to race five times during Speedweeks
Joey Logano is only 18, but he is about to attempt a rare Daytona double, and then some.
Logano, who has never raced at Daytona International Speedway, will make his first two starts on Feb. 7 when he races in both the ARCA Re/Max Series season opener and Budweiser Shootout.
“I’m doing it,” Logano said of his busy Speedweeks 2009 schedule. “I’m running both races and then I’ve got the Nationwide race…then running the Cup race. Between all that, I’ve got my hands full.”
Toss in the Daytona 150-mile qualifying races, and Logano will be racing five events during Speedweeks.
“I’m just getting as many laps as I can and learn as much as I can,” Logano said. “I’ve got a big year ahead on the Cup side…whatever I can do to make myself better.”
Logano, who was signed to Joe Gibbs Racing’s driver development program in 2005, has generated plenty of buzz since he began racing at the age of six. He already has amassed a long list of accomplishments, including winning the 2007 Camping World East championship and more recently winning in his ARCA debut in May at Rockingham and winning in just his third Nation-wide Series start in June at Kentucky.
Logano, who is replacing Tony Stewart in the No. 20 Toyota, will next try to add youngest Daytona 500 winner to that list. The current record is owned by Jeff Gordon, who won the Daytona 500 in 1997 at the age of 25 years, six months and 12 days.
Logano began his indoctrination to Daytona at a three-day ARCA test with close to 50 other cars. Driving the No. 25 Toyota of Venturini Motorsports, Logano clocked in at 179.569 mph in his first laps around the legendary motorsports facility.
“I’ve been here and watched a ton of races, watched the 500 a hundred times, probably,” Logano said. “I just want to get out there. We’re almost ready to go out there and just go around Daytona with all the history around this place.
“Just to go out there and make laps is going to be really cool. We’re going to learn a lot, as much as we can about the race car and about the track and drafting and see if we can come back with a good race car.”
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