Rising Joe Gibbs Racing star Joey Logano will continue his pursuit of Kentucky Speedway perfection when he competes in his third "Meijer 300 presented by Ritz" this weekend.

The 20-year-old Middletown, Conn., driver placed 14th in the final NASCAR Nationwide Series standings last season after capturing four pole awards, five victories and a total of 13 top-five and 16 top-10 finishes through 22 of 35 events.

Two important milestones in the impressive Nationwide Series run were reached just 14 days following his 19th birthday on June 13 when he became the first series driver to earn consecutive pole awards and 300-mile race victories on the 1.5-mile Kentucky Speedway tri-oval.

Logano has led 96 of his 400 Kentucky Speedway Nationwide Series race laps to date and banked $198,983 after two highly-successful visits, so it wasn't surprising to learn he will travel between this weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in Michigan to the site of his first Nationwide Series victory to defend his "Meijer 300 presented by Ritz" titles.

"Kentucky Speedway is one of my favorite racetracks, a place that just suits me. I know what I want in the car and know where I need to be when I go around the place. Two poles, two wins. A perfect Kentucky record is pretty cool," he said.

He credits his Bluegrass State success to the many test laps he turned at the speedway in the JGR development program and a solid racetrack memory.

"I used to come to Kentucky probably once every other month for two-day tests. You're out there just making laps with no pressure, just feeling the changes in the car. As you make laps, you find things on a racetrack and store those in your memory. When you come back, you don't think you'll remember those little things until you get out there and they show up. Experience means a whole bunch," Logano analyzed.

After taking 2009 Sprint Cup Series Rookie of the Year honors with a victory and a total of three top-five and seven top-10 finishes in 36 senior circuit events, Kentucky Speedway fans can expect to see a battle-hardened Logano in this season's "Meijer 300 presented by Ritz."

"We definitely come to the racetrack to win. I'm sure we're going to have a good racecar and be one of the guys up there battling for the win," he said.

Combine bolstered confidence with a continuously growing wealth of racing knowledge, and Logano and Crew Chief Kevin Kidd could be just a solid pep talk away from deepening JGR's Kentucky Speedway connection by taking a third straight "Meijer 300 presented by Ritz" crown.

"That's something that goes a long way for me," he said. "You pump me up, I go."

Race tickets, Big Deals specials and camping for the June 11-12 "Meijer 300 presented by Ritz" weekend can be reserved through the "Tickets" page of this Web site, by phone at 888-652-7223 (RACE) or by visiting the Kentucky Speedway ticket offices in either Ft. Mitchell, Ky., at 400 Buttermilk Pike, Suite 100 near the Montgomery Inn restaurant or the track Fan Center located off of Interstate 71 Exit 57 and Ky. Hwy. 35 N in Sparta, Ky. Tickets additionally are available through Meijer stores and tickets.com outlets.

Story by Mike Schmaltz

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