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Logano: 'I did not intentionally' wreck Hamlin

April 03, 2013, Staff report, NASCAR.com

Joey Logano garage cockpit Auto Club Speedway

No. 22 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver says, 'My number one goal is to go win a race.'

In his first on-camera interview since the Auto Club 400 on March 24 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., No. 22 Penske Racing driver Joey Logano appeared on ESPN SportsCenter on Tuesday with ESPN lead NASCAR reporter Marty Smith. Below is the transcript of an excerpt from the SportsCenter Conversation:

"My number one goal is to go win a race. So did I intentionally wreck him? No, I did not intentionally do that."

--Joey Logano on making contact with Denny Hamlin on the final lap of the Auto Club 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Auto Club Speedway on March 24 in Fontana, Calif.

Marty Smith: How did what happened at Bristol impact your relationship with Denny Hamlin?

Joey Logano: Well, you feel like you got done wrong, alright? You know, got spun out. So it doesn’t help that relationship, obviously. And yes, did I remember who I was racing against? Yes. Obviously I know who I’m racing against and what happened a week before but going into turn three on the last lap, I remember ‘I’m going to win the race.’ My number one goal is to go win a race. So did I intentionally wreck him? No, I did not intentionally do that. If I was going to do that, I would have hit him in the left-rear tire. I hit him in the door. It’s hard racing at that point. I hate that he got hurt. I feel like the comments after the race that I made were taken way out of context. My mind wasn’t straight and I didn’t know Denny was hurt. There was no way for me to know. And it got taken way out of context.
 
Marty Smith: I talked to Carl Edwards once a couple of years ago in an interview like this and he told me that you have to stand your ground as a race car driver …
 
Joey Logano: Yeah you have to stand up for yourself. We’re racing against the same people every weekend and you have to put your foot down and show them that you’re out here to win a race, you’re out here to stand strong and you’re doing that for your whole team.
 
Marty Smith: What’s it like to hear from a peer (Tony Stewart), a guy that you previously … took his car, OK, that got you into the Cup Series, say, it’s, “a rich kid who never had to work …”
 
Joey Logano: You can say it the same way as my comments made after my race -- heat of the moment. Our sport, we don’t have time to take a deep breath, give me 15 minutes to regain my thoughts, and what the heck just happened, and let me watch a replay and see all this. I’m the same Joey Logano I’ve always been. I’m still happy-go-lucky. I’m very competitive. That’s never going to change, you know what I mean? I’m still who I’ve always been. But I don’t get walked on.

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