Shock Problem Forces Logano to Settle for Ninth in Chicago.

Post Race Highlights:

  • Joey Logano qualified his No. 18 Dollar General Toyota on the pole for Saturday afternoon’s Dollar General 300 at Chicagoland Speedway. It was Logano’s fourth pole of the 2012 NASCAR Nationwide Series season and the 20th pole of his Nationwide Series career.
  • When the green flag flew, Logano jumped out to the lead and set the pace for the first seven laps. Logano raced side-by-side with Sam Hornish Jr. and lost the lead for one lap, but then retook the top spot on lap nine and held on through the first round of pit stops on lap 40.
  • The Dollar General pit crew got Logano out in the top spot after their first stop for four tires, fuel and a small air pressure adjustment. Logano kept the lead on the restart and held onto first until lap 59.
  • After falling back to third, Logano radioed in to crew chief Adam Stevens that the car was tight in the center and loose off. The team started to come up with a plan for the next pit stop. In the meantime, Logano got back into second and set his sights on the leader.
  • Logano reported a vibration on lap 93 and on lap 94 brought the Dollar General Toyota to pit road. The stop started a round of green-flag pit stops and when things cycled through, Logano was still in second.
  • On the following pit stop, the No. 18 came into the pits second and got out first following another great stop from the Dollar General guys. On the ensuing restart, Logano took off and led the next eight laps.
  • After losing the lead, Logano reported in that the car was getting extremely loose. Logano fell from first to third to fifth to seventh. On the following pit stop, Stevens tried to tighten Logano up, but the Dollar General Toyota got no better.
  • In the end, despite leading more laps than any other car in the field, the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing machine had to settle for a ninth-place finish. When the team got the car back to the garage after the race, they diagnosed a rear shock went bad causing the late-race handling issues.
  • Logano led the race three different times for a total of 67 laps.
  • The No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota continues to lead the NASCAR Nationwide Series Owner’s point standings. The No. 18 team now has a 4-point advantage over the No. 6 of Roush-Fenway Racing.
  • With the top-10 finish, Dollar General customers will receive 10-percent off their entire online order at DollarGeneral.com this Monday. Offer is good only online at DollarGeneral.com and only this coming Monday.

Logano’s Post-Race Thoughts:

“That might have been one of the most frustrating Nationwide Series races I’ve never been a part of. Our Dollar General Toyota was fast today. I think we were the best car on the track. We led a bunch of laps early and then led some more in the middle of the race and we were just trying to get the car to catch up with the track. But then, just past halfway, something started happening and the car got loose. Adam made some adjustments to make the car tighter and it just didn’t help. The car just kept getting looser and looser. It was ‘evil’ loose there at the end of the race. We just couldn’t run with those guys and was just trying to hold on.

“It’s frustrating because we had a car that was better than ninth. I really wanted to come out here and win the Dollar General 300 in the Dollar General car. We gave up some points in the Owner’s Championship but we’ve got a few more races to get it right. The thing is that everyone knew this No. 18 Toyota was out there today. We are going to keep digging. There is nothing you can do about mechanical issues. We will just keep going. I’ve got the best team out there and we’ll get ourselves another win soon.”

Related Articles

Dollar General 300