April 15, 2007

The 'Next Jeff Gordon' Begins His NASCAR Career: When they asked NASCAR driver Mark Martin in 2005 who he'd pick as his replacement at Roush Racing, his answer was quick: Joey Logano. "I would put him in that car in a heartbeat," Martin said, naming a 14-year-old who wasn't even old enough to be allowed to race at the top level yet. "I'm telling you, he's ready. He's good enough to do it." Logano, now 16 (but still only 5-foot-7 and 112 pounds), begins his NASCAR career in Phoenix Thursday.

posted by rcade to auto racing at 08:41 AM - 13 comments

Good luck Joey.But,there will never be another Jeff Gordon........

posted by nafsfeihc1#oN at 11:11 AM on April 15, 2007

Wow!....Aren't we all just so lucky? The "Current" Jeff Gordon is hardly near the end of his career and we already have the next one! After reading the article is does seem as if this kid has talent however, his own apparent arrogance aside, I think it's a little unfair to put what is likely to be unreal pressure on this kid way to soon.

posted by R_A_Mason at 11:55 AM on April 15, 2007

They said the same things about a 12-year-old named Lewis Hamilton in Europe a few years ago. McLaren signed him way back then. What's he doing now? Driving a McLaren F1 car alongside the world champion, and finishing on the podium in his first two races. Regarding young Mr. Logano, if Mark Martin says he's good, he's good. But 112 pounds?? He's not racing a open-wheeler. Someone needs to take that boy into the infield and introduce him to some BBQ.

posted by eccsport78 at 12:53 PM on April 15, 2007

With all due respect, and remember I said with all due respect, I have heard the next Jeff Gordon several times and it hasn't come to fruition yet. Besides Jeff Gordon wasn't hyped as anything more than a decent rookie driving for HMS that was in the process of revamping when he started. So when someone says they have the next anybody I am skeptical.

posted by hoytie at 01:21 PM on April 15, 2007

at 112 lbs. he should win every race, skills or not lol he's very lite and in turn makes the car lighter

posted by coachhannon at 06:24 PM on April 15, 2007

Coach, I was under the impression that they added weights to cars with drivers under a certain weight to make it more equal.

posted by apoch at 07:22 PM on April 15, 2007

No, apoch, you are thinking of horse racing. (I kid, I kid.) I was not aware of drivers having to be a certain weight to drive for NASCAR. But I will check.

posted by steelergirl at 08:29 PM on April 15, 2007

apoch, and for anyone else who cares, a driver's weight does not matter. It is the weight of the car only that is important. This is true in both Indy cars and NASCAR, as far as my feeble computer skills could find on the net. coachhannon, following your reasoning, how do you explain Tony Stewart's wins? Also, wouldn't a lighter car "get loose" in the turns easier than the "heavy car"?

posted by steelergirl at 08:56 PM on April 15, 2007

In just about every form of racing there is a minimum weight for the car/driver combination. The advantage a team would have with a 112 lb driver opposed to say Smoke is that the team has more "freedom" to add weight to the frame rails of the car effectively lowering the center of gravity of the car causing it to rotate through the corners better.

posted by hoytie at 09:27 PM on April 15, 2007

There is no weight limit in nascar. If you watch a F1 race the driver, with his helmet and all his gear he had on in the car are weighed within seconds of parking the cars. As soon as the podium show is over the car is weighed, if you listen to the in car audio you will hear the teams tell the drivers to pick up clag (marbles to nascar folks). This is because the extra pound or two can make the difference in passing the post race inspection. Lewis Hamilton is looking to be a great driver at yet another level, to top one to boot. Having the contract with Ron in his pocket had to take tons of stress off of him as he was coming up. Only time will tell. Remember Jacques VILLENEUVE won the world championship his 2nd year out, it helped that he landed in the top seat in the sport at the time. The same thing is helping Lewis big time. If he was driving a Torro Rosso I am sure he would be totally off the radar at this point.

posted by vipers-pit at 09:49 PM on April 15, 2007

I missed the F1 race today, but saw that Hamilton finished second again. Three podiums in his first three races....amazing. Yes, it does help that he is in a McLaren, for sure. He looks like he's going to win a race this year, just a matter of time. Some of the F1 insiders have been talking about how smart this kid is, he gives incredible feedback to his race engineers about what his car is doing, the kind of stuff you can't pick up with telemetry. Sounds like a certain Brazilian driver from years ago, whose post-race briefings with his engineers would sometimes go on for hours. Hamilton's helmet design is a tribute to that former McLaren driver and 3-time world champion.

posted by eccsport78 at 02:14 AM on April 16, 2007

Regarding Joey Logano's weight, I assume he'll fill out with age and training. I haven't seen him, so it's hard to tell. In order to have the stamina to race a stock car around a track for 250-500 laps, you need muscle.

posted by eccsport78 at 02:30 AM on April 16, 2007

I'm sorry but ever sense Dale died in 2001, NASCAR has never been the same. Now a days its all bout $$$$$$$$$$$. Back in tha dayz of Richard, Dale, Yourborough. that wuz NASCAR. so when u all say "The next Jeff Gordan" it makes me sick. So does all the stupid changes that NASCAR has made, like goin to Mexico City?!?!?HUH?!?!Toyota Camrys?!?! call me what u like but NASCAR just aint wut it used to be. and i miss it. its run by a bunch of $$$$$$$ money luvin yankees now.

posted by TelamarketersBeware at 09:42 AM on April 18, 2007

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