Joey Logano Finishes Championship Rookie Year With Showdown Victory
Irwindale, Calif. – Joey Logano capped off his rookie season in the NASCAR Grand National Division the same way he started it: In Victory Lane.
Logano, the 17-year-old Joe Gibbs Racing development driver, picked up his biggest victory Saturday night winning the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown at Irwindale (Calif.) Speedway.
He held off fellow Busch East driver Peyton Sellers, who turned 24 Saturday, following a green-white-checkered finish to the 250-lap event that has been dubbed the ‘Daytona 500 of short-track racing.’
"I just had a great race tonight," Logano said. "My crew, they picked it up a ton. To be able to run up front all night, this team is unbelievable. ... I just have a lot of confidence. That's what you have to have to win. We came here knowing we can win and that's what we did."
Two-time West Series champion Mike Duncan finished third in a frantic finish, edging defending race winner Matt Kobyluck at the start-finish line. Eddie McDonald followed closely in fifth.
Brian Ickler over overcame a mid-race mechanical problem that put him a lap down prior to the 200-lap break to drive his way back up to sixth. Eric Holmes, Mike Olsen, John Salemi, and David Mayhew rounded out the top 10.
Logano won six times during the Grand National regular season – including his first career start in the West Series at Phoenix International Raceway in April. He became the first rookie to win a NASCAR Busch East title and set the record as series’ youngest champion.