Bristol: Joey Logano preview

Joey Logano will make his third Nationwide Series start of the season Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway. Logano has two top-10 finishes this year, including a pole position and the most laps led at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. The Joe...

Joey Logano will make his third Nationwide Series start of the season Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway. Logano has two top-10 finishes this year, including a pole position and the most laps led at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. The Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 GameStop team is currently second in the NASCAR Nationwide owner's point standings.

What Joey's Saying: You were dominant at Auto Club Speedway, leading 130 laps on the 2-mile oval. But, Bristol is a high-banked half-mile track. How is it different for you as a driver?: "The biggest thing is that the straightaways are so short. You don't have time to do anything. You come off of one corner and you're already looking toward your entry into the next corner. It gives you no chance to relax or rest. The first time I went to Bristol, I came in after a five-lap run and I was out-of-breath. I forgot to breathe! But, I've learned since then that you take a breath on the straightaways. I'm much better at it now that I've got it figured out.

"It's definitely one of the coolest tracks. You walk into that place and it feels like a giant stadium. It's a really quick track. The laps fly by, but since they re-did the track, you can move around to help the racecar. It's my job to find the best line for the GameStop Toyota."

Spot the Difference: The Bristol event is the first short-track race of the season, so we asked crew chief Kevin Kidd "what are three things that are different between the cars raced here versus cars prepared for larger speedways?" Here's what he said:

"Number one would be brakes. At the shorts tracks, brakes are critical so you run a much bigger package. At the speedways, we don't use any cooling ducts for the brakes, but we use them on the short tracks to keep the brakes operating within a certain range of temperature.

"Number two would probably be the entire suspension package. On the speedways, you are so concerned with aerodynamics and how you're placing the car to maintain a certain attitude relative to the ground. You have to compromise your set-up to maintain the aerodynamics. On a short track, you're not so worried about that, so you want to set-up the suspension in the front and rear of the car to get the maximum mechanical grip.

"Third, I'd say the construction of the car. We lighten-up the chassis. The car still has to weight 3400 pounds overall, so we might use a chassis that takes 100 pounds of ballast on a speedway car versus a lighter short-track chassis where we can add 500 pounds of ballast. The key is to get the weight as low as we can to achieve the lowest center-of-gravity for the entire car. We always try to do that, but we can be much more aggressive with that on a short-track set-up."

What's Joey Playing This Week?: The No. 20 GameStop Toyota will feature the ominous tones of Sony Computer Entertainment's God of War III. The game for Sony's PlayStation 3 was selected in some polls as the "most anticipated release" of 2010. God of War III is scheduled for a March 16 release at the more than 6400 GameStop stores around the world, or online at GameStop.com.

-source: jgr

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Joey Logano
Teams Joe Gibbs Racing