KANSAS CITY, Kan. – With nothing set in stone for the 2020 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season, Corey LaJoie is doing everything in his power to help his cause.
Prior to his qualifying effort for Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway (2:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), LaJoie indicated he has yet to sign a contract for next year, but he hopes to be back with Go Fas Racing and the No. 32 Ford Mustang entry.
“Every talk I’ve had, we’ve been working toward me being back where I’m at,” LaJoie said. “I feel like I’ve had good communication with my group … just getting to the point where we’re having some fun and I like the guys I’m with now.
“I haven’t signed anything, if that’s what the answer is, but I’m working toward making that happen.”
LaJoie also clarified what a potential relationship with Stewart-Haas Racing might look like if Go Fas Racing were able to team up with the Ford Performance powerhouse
“I think it’s just going to be Go Fas buying cars from Stewart-Haas as opposed to what you guys would say is an alliance,” LaJoie said. “There would be some sort of help, I hope, because four-year-old Front Row cars we’re taking and running with every week, obviously, there’s room to improve there.”
From a business and personal standpoint, LaJoie continues to build relationships with companies to come on board the No. 32 car, specifically those who want to dip their toe in the NASCAR waters without the price tag of partnering with the larger organizations in the garage.
LaJoie is also focused on getting the best power under the hood of his race car in order to produce better results on a consistent basis, rather than wait until superspeedways to squeak out top-10 finishes like his seventh-place result in last Sunday’s race at Talladega Superspeedway.
“I’m working on my end with partners to try to upgrade the engine package from that B-tiered engine package to the A-tiered engine package, maybe not for all the races but for some,” LaJoie said. “The faster that you make that horse that I sit on every week, the faster it hopefully puts me in the conversation in the next couple years for a race-winning capable car.”
With an outlook on the future, the 28-year-old knows an uptick in on-track performance will only improve his chances to compete for a more competitive ride. That’s just another reason why he’s directly involved with the day-to-day operations of improving the organization as a whole.
“I’ve had to be because the situations I’ve been in throughout my career, I’ve never been able to just sit back because my phone doesn’t ring,” LaJoie said. “It used to ring, but now my on-track stock is just low enough where I’m not in those conversations to get in the 37 ride or when some of these guys start to think about retiring. I’m trying to get my on-track stock to where I’m in those conversations because I know I can do it.
“That’s why I’m working hard to get my on-track stock better because, perception wise, if we can get that 32 car running better, I think that carries a little bit more weight making that car incrementally better each and every year with me behind the wheel on and off the track. When those guys do have conversations about who they’re going to put in there next, hopefully my name is in those conversations.”
Away from the race track, LoJoie hones in on his social media presence, which includes his “Sunday Money” podcast with Motor Racing Network. LaJoie is working tirelessly on his various social media platforms, hoping his personality will attract more dollars.
“It gets increasing more important every year because that’s the second question sponsors ask, ‘Well, how many Instagram followers, how many Twitter followers?'”LaJoie said. “So, I’m working on that and I have fun with it. I’m just gaining that off the track because there’s only so much I can do inside the race car.”
Overall, LaJoie thinks he is exceeding the expectations the No. 32 team set out to accomplish this season, but he’s not willing to settle with a focus on the greater goal.
“I’ve been running the best I have in my Cup career and Go Fas and their 32 car are running the best they have in their life span,” LaJoie said. “I think that carries a little bit of weight, but it’s still not quite good enough.”