When Mark Martin held a press conference in the Dover Speedway infield media center to announce he would no longer run all of the Cup races he was asked who he’d like to see replace him.
He said, “Joey Logano.”An entire room full of motorsports media people looked around at each other and asked, “Who’s that?”
Sensing the moment, Martin explained that although the media hadn’t heard of Logano yet, they surely would. Although he was just a kid at the time Martin said of Logano,“He’ll be one of the greatest drivers in NASCAR history.”
Mark’s son had raced with Joey so Mark had seen him race a lot. Even back then, Logano showed he had a quality that’s hard to see but necessary for greatness in sports: basic raw talent. It’s what Ali had in boxing, Tiger Woods has in golf, Tom Brady has in football and Joey Logano has behind the wheel of a race car.
It didn’t take Logano long for the media to notice. He won his first Xfinity race at age 18, his first Cup race at age 19.
Now, at age 31 and with a lot more racing ahead of him, Logano is already a Daytona 500 winner, a NASCAR Cup champion and the winner of the first dirt track race held in big league NASCAR in 50 years. As for class, he handed a small child in the grandstand the checkered flag from that Bristol dirt race.
All of us who call New England our home are proud of Joey Logano, a man who was born and raised in Middletown, CT. You can see his uniform, the trophy he earned for winning his first Cup race (which was at NHMS), the car he won Martinsville driving which set him up for the 2018 Championship and lots of photos of his racing in the North East Motor Sports Museum. The museum is open Saturdays from 10am-4pm.