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Now that Joey Logano can add his name to the small list of two-time Cup Series champions, the conversation is already turning to his legacy and potential to be inducted into the prestigious NASCAR Hall of Fame.
After taking home the 2022 Cup Series championship with a win at Phoenix Raceway over the weekend, the "Race For The Championship" star sat down with NASCAR’s “Backseat Drivers” podcast hosts who immediately picked his brain about eventually becoming a Hall of Famer.
Currently, Logano is the second active driver to claim multiple titles at the competition’s highest level, the NASCAR Cup Series. As a result, a case could certainly be made that he’s standing far enough above his peers to be considered Hall of Fame material. However, the driver remained humble during his interview, noting he has miles to go before he’ll allow himself to start thinking about his legacy.
“I can’t say I put much thought in it because… I’ve got a long ways to go in my career, I’m not done yet,” Logano explained. “Hopefully, we’re not talking about two [championships]. We’re talking about five or six of them, maybe seven.”
“I’m going to try,” he added with a laugh. “I’ll call my shot and see what I can do.”
More to the point, Logano explained that he feels there are a lot more achievements beyond being a championship driver to be considered a Hall of Famer. In his mind, he’s still aspiring to elevate the sport rather than his place within it.
“When I think of Hall of Famer, I don't really think of stats that much. I think everyone’s definition of a Hall Famer is different,” he told the hosts. “I think somebody that has given to the sport as much as they’ve taken and to make it better for the next generation, that’s a true champion in our sport, that’s a true Hall of Famer. You can win championships and then disappear at the end of your career, I’m not sure you're a Hall fo Farmer, in my opinion.”
He added: “So, I think people who built the sport and continue building the sport are the true Hall of Farmers and I don’t think that happens from behind the wheel or in competition every time. I think that happens, a lot of times, with just people that care and want to see our sport grow. That to me is Hall of Fame material.”
Although Logano believes there’s a certain degree of evolution and spirit one has to bring to be in the NASCAR Hall of Fame, the actual organization keeps its eligibility qualifications pretty loosely defined. According to its website, the criteria to be considered for induction has less to do with accomplishments and more to do with time spent in NASCAR.
Drivers who have competed in NASCAR for 10 years and have been retired for two are automatically eligible. Additionally, drivers who competed for 10 years and reached their 55th birthday by the end of the year are eligible for induction in that year’s class as well. They can be considered for the Modern Era ballot if their career began within the past 60 years. However, they can only be on that ballot for 10 years before they must be considered for the Pioneer Ballot, a crop of five annual nominees chosen by 43 members including all living NASCAR Hall of Famers. Finally, any driver who has competed for 30 or more years in NASCAR is automatically eligible as well.
Logano was signed to Joe Gibbs Racing in 2005 as a development driver and began racing in the K&N Pro Series in 2007. So, he’s been in NASCAR for roughly 17 years. While he could retire today and have enough accolades under his belt to be eligible for consideration in the future, he’s made it clear that, at 32 years old, he’d much rather win more championships while still in his prime.
See how Logano’s second Cup Series championship season unfolded on “Race For The Championship” on Peacock now.
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