CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Joey Logano said he’s made peace with Danica Patrick and isn’t worried she’ll intentionally wreck him to ruin his championship chances.
Logano spun Patrick during the Oct. 11 race at Charlotte and she was given permission over her team radio to retaliate. She later remarked that wrecking Logano would have no effect on his title chances because he’d already earned a spot in the third round of the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.
Logano said Tuesday he took responsibility for the accident in a conversation with Patrick.
“I think we came to a good conclusion of what happened — that’s in the past, that’s in the mirror, and we’ll move forward,” he said.
Logano, winner of one race in each of the first two rounds of the Chase, said the Charlotte accident was his fault.
“It was a racing deal,” he said during an appearance at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
“It was one of those points that we were both being very aggressive. She was going to, obviously, try to take the spot and come down across me, and I probably should have gave at that point and I didn’t. I told her, really in all honesty, I probably should have backed out in that situation.”
The Chase field has now been reset and Logano heads into Martinsville Speedway this weekend as one of eight drivers trying to advance into the finale. A win in any of the next three rounds sends a driver to the Nov. 16 finale with a shot at the title, and no driver wants to worry about being wrecked by a non-contender.
Martinsville, a tight .526-mile paperclip, is the perfect track for drivers to settle scores because the cars are on top of each other the entire race gouging for position. Contact levels are high, and tempers are short.
Travis Geisler, competition director for Team Penske, said there was little the organization could do to smooth things over between Logano, Patrick and her Stewart-Haas Racing team.
“It’s between the people behind the wheel and whatever mood they’re in at the moment,” Geisler said. “We try to do the best we can to maybe advise in that department on what’s the right path. That’s where the quarterbacks make the call. They do their thing.”
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