Joey Logano is calling for NASCAR to make changes after his car became airborne and flipped over Sunday during the GEICO 500 at Talladega.
“On one hand, I’m so proud to drive a Cup car that is safe that I can go through a crash like that and get out and speak about it. On one hand I’m mad about being in the crash, the other hand I’m just happy I’m alive, on the other hand I think ‘When are we gonna stop?’, because this is dangerous doing what we’re doing,” Logano told FOX Sports. “I’ve got a rollbar in my head, you know what I mean?
Logano was running third on the outside when Denny Hamlin was turned into the left rear of Logano’s car, turning it down to the inside of the racetrack entering Turn 3. Logano’s car became airborne and flipped over in front of traffic, sliding up the banking.
Logano was unhurt and the only driver eliminated in the crash.
“It is a product of this racing,” Logano said to the post-race media of the accident. “On one hand, I am so proud to drive a Cup car that is safe, and that I can go through a crash like that and get out and speak about it. On one hand, I am mad about being in the crash and on the other, I am happy to be alive.
“On another hand, I am wondering when we are going to stop because this is dangerous doing what we are doing. I got a roll bar in my head. That is not OK. I am one hit away from the same situation Ryan Newman just went through. I just don’t feel like that is acceptable.”
The crash involved Hamlin, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Bubba Wallace, eventual race winner Brad Keselowski and Chase Briscoe.
“That’s not OK,” he said. “I’m one hit away from the same situation Ryan Newman just went through. I just don’t feel like that’s acceptable. A lot of it’s due to this big spoiler and these big runs, the pushing and all that. It’s no one’s fault – Denny’s trying to go and the No. 47′s trying to go, it’s a product of this racing. We have to fix it, though. Because someone already got hurt, and we’re still doing it.”
Newman was in a serious accident in the 2020 Daytona 500, which saw Newman’s car get hit in the driver’s side roof after it flipped over in front of traffic.
Keselowski led just one lap, but it was the one that mattered most.
A late caution for debris brought about the overtime shootout, Keselowski held off William Byron and Daytona 500 winner Michael McDowell to the finish line as cars wrecked behind the leaders.
“What an awesome day today,” Keselowski said in a postrace television interview. “I had a couple chances to take the lead (earlier), but I’m thinking, “just keep your car in one piece.’”
Byron finished second and McDowell third. Kevin Harvick was fourth and Matt DiBenedetto rounded out the top five.
DiBenedetto led 28 laps, many late, and earned the Stage 1 victory. However he was shuffled out of the lead late searching for his first career victory.
“It’s tough,” he said. “… our day will come. I’m just lucky to drive this thing.”
The victory continued a streak of dominance at Talladega Superspeedway not seen in quite some time. The win by Team Penske was their eighth in the past 11 races at the 2.66-mile trioval.
Keselowski’s win was the ninth this season among 10 drivers and it was his sixth at Talladega Superspeedway, which tied him on the all-time list with Jeff Gordon and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Bubba Wallace won Stage 2, the first stage victory for his career.
Fellow Team Penske driver Ryan Blaney picked a bad lane late to go from the front to a ninth-place finish. The other Penske driver finished next-to-last after being sent airborne and bringing out the caution at the end of Stage 1.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.