Joey Logano wasn‘t able to become a back-to-back Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion in 2019 but still finished fifth in the final standings.
Logano did make the playoffs for the sixth time in his career but was eliminated in the Round of 8. Along the way the Team Penske driver scored two wins this season to extend his season streak of winning at least one race to eight straight (2012-2019).
His two victories came at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Michigan International Speedway. Overall, Logano had 12 top-five and 21 top-10 finishes.
He had 11 stage wins in 2019, after only scoring six stage wins total prior to the season. Logano also led the series in stage points earned.
There was also controversy in Logano‘s season when he was involved in a post-race altercation with Denny Hamlin at Martinsville in the Round of 8. The two had made contact on track earlier and approached each other to discuss things after the race. Things became physical in an altercation that escalated to include several crewmembers before order was restored.
“I was a little frustrated with the situation and wanted to talk to him about it,” Logano said. “Maybe I shouldn‘t have shoved him at the end. There‘s a lot of passion out there.
“I just wanted to see what he was going to say. And he really wasn‘t apologetic at all. That‘s more frustrating when someone‘s like that.”
Logano‘s quest to make it to the Championship 4 and run for a second consecutive title came to an end in the penultimate race of the year at ISM Raceway. He started second and led 93 laps on his way to a ninth-place finish in the Bluegreen Vacations 500. But it wasn‘t enough to advance the defending series champion back to the Championship 4, falling just seven points short.
“We wanted to be in the hunt during Ford Championship weekend, but at the end of the day we didn‘t quite get it done,” Logano said. “We still had a good year and in times like this you look for ways to get stronger as a team and this is certainly one of those times. This is a great group of guys. We‘ve been together a long time and we‘ll come back next year even stronger.”
He came to Homestead-Miami trying to play the role of spoiler. That didn‘t happen as Logano crossed the finish line fifth.
“You want to win,” he explained. “You want to be the one who spoils the must-win to win the championship party if you‘re not in it and we just weren‘t fast enough. Maybe a late-race restart would could have made some magic happen, but fifth was the best we were gonna do. That was about the highest we got all race long and apparently all year long as well because we were fifth in points, so it was a strong year.
“It wasn‘t a championship year. We want to be better, but we‘ll move on.”
2019 Driver Season Reviews