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Joey Logano started sixth and finished third in Sunday’s New Hampshire 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion. While it may look like just another top-five finish for the New England native at his home track, the afternoon was far more difficult for Logano and company as they fought an ill-handling race car throughout the first 225 laps of the race. Logano started sixth but had dropped out of the top 10 by lap 62, battling a car that was loose in and off the corners and extremely tight through the center. When the team pitted for the second time at lap 101, crew chief Todd Gordon called for wholesale changes to the Shell-Pennzoil Ford. While the adjustments were a step in the right direction, Logano continued to battle the same handling characteristics and, at one point, ran as deep as 24th position. On lap 182, the team pitted for the third time and were finally able to get the handling closer to what their driver needed to move back toward the front of the field. With 270 laps remaining, Logano finally climbed back inside the top-10 and when the team pitted for the final time. Gordon called for a four tire stop while many of the lead lap competitors took two tires or no tires. From there, Logano moved his way toward the top-five, dodging several on-track incidents eventually climbing as high as second position before finishing the race in third.

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“I will take a third place after all that. We were awful at the beginning of the race. We tried some new things and apparently they didn’t work so we aborted mission in the middle of the race and got some speed back in the 22 but not enough to beat the 20. I thought we would have something since we had 4 tires but we didn’t have the car to get up there with him. It’s funny, seemed like Tony and I, we fell backwards together, we started driving through the field together. We were around each other all day and never thought the two of us would be racing for second at the end of the race like that. Overall proud of the effort the team put in, never‑quit attitude. It really paid off today.”