Logano's Single Focus

Joey Logano

Joey Logano has three fourth-place finishes this season, but he's looking for more. (Photo: Getty Images)

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FORT WORTH, Texas - There’s a basketball game in town? A major event? Something really big?

Don’t ask Joey Logano about it.

“I just know racing,’’ he said. “I don’t really care about any other sport too much. I’m here to race. Whatever they want to do shooting hoops, they can keep on going with that.’’

So, no, Logano will not be attending today’s NCAA Final Four games at AT&T Stadium, the home of the Dallas Cowboys. No, he won’t be staying for Monday night’s championship game.

“I’m focused in on trying to win a race,’’ said Logano, who has three career Sprint Cup victories. “I feel like if I leave the racetrack I get distracted. If I don’t run well, that’s going to be the reason why, so I’m not going to give myself an opportunity to have an excuse.’’

It’s quite an attitude for a 23-year-old, who is in his sixth Cup season. It’s also a sign of Logano’s growth from a wide-eyed kid in Cup replacing Tony Stewart at Joe Gibbs Racing to learning about leadership, the demands of the job and the pressures that come with it.

Logano’s education has come in front of fans, his mistakes magnified and his accomplishments amplified.

Logano admits he’s his move to Team Penske last year also played a role in his attitude.

“I’ve probably taken that to the extreme over the last two years,’’ Logano said of his increased focus. “If you’re looking to be the best, you’ve got to work harder than everybody. You’ve got to figure out how to be better.’’

After making the Chase last year and finishing eighth, he’s started this season well. Logano has scored three fourth-place finishes - Phoenix, Las Vegas and last weekend at Martinsville - and has four top-five starts in the first six races of the season. He’s proving teammate Brad Keselowski right in pushing for Logano to join the team after the 2012 season.

“I’m proud of the speed we’ve got,’’ Logano said. “The win is right around the corner. In all honesty, I feel very confident about this race track. This kind of plays into our hand as a team. We’ve always been good at the faster, bumpy, wore-out race tracks and that’s exactly what this is so I can’t wait for practice to get this weekend started.”

And he won’t be distracted by everything else happening in the Metroplex.

“I’m in the garage until it closes all the time just to be with the guys,’’ Logano said. “If something comes up, I can help them with some answers or help them with some setup stuff. The more I can learn about the racecar and what direction they’re going with changes and why they’re doing it, the better information I can feed back to them and whether it’s the right or wrong answer for our car. 

“I know if I’ve tried my best and tried my hardest, I’m not going to be mad all the next week if we don’t run well, and I think it gives you the opportunity to run better. I’ve made the commitment to go out here and win championships and that’s what I’ve got to do.” 

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