Joey Logano is trying to do the impossible... live up to the hype of his talents.
The 18 year old last week started his first Nationwide race and came home with a clean sixth place finish. Not too bad for a youngster in his first race, that is unless you're name is Joey Logano. Logano, calm and cool despite all the pressure that surrounds him, came out this week and sat on the pole for the race at Nashville. Then he leads a good chunk of the early part of this race.
A mid race pit stop shuffles him backwards a bit and he gets caught up in an accident not of his own doing, which sends his number 20 Toyota into the wall, and he ends up finishing 31st. Logano was upset that he finished sixth last week, so you can bet he isn't too happy after Nashville, but I think he is really showing his talents.
It isn't too exciting to see a Sprint Cup driver dominate the Nationwide Series and win the championship every season. That's one reason television ratings for the series are down. People tune into this to see one thing: the up and coming stars of NASCAR.
I believe that the Nationwide series will be revived if some of the younger Nationwide guys can live up to their hype in 2009. If Logano returns next season the Nationwide Series will have names like his, David Stremme, Steven Wallace, Brad Keselowski, Jason Leffler, Bobby Hamilton Jr., Scott Wimmer, Brad Coleman, and Mike Wallace as regulars. We haven't seen this many Nationwide regulars with a chance at a championship since the late 1990's, when you had guys like Earnhardt Jr., Matt Kenseth, Todd Bodine, Randy LaJoie, Mike Mclaughlin, Elliott Sadler, and Jeff Green.
If you remember back in 1998 and 1999 the (then named) Busch Series was booming with ratings and new fans watching, because the young talent in the series were consistently running as good or better than the Cup drivers.
I really hope Joe Gibbs Racing gives Joey Logano a full season in the Nationwide Series in 2009, because he is what the series has needed for years.