What happened: Joey Logano received a mega contract extension from Team Penske and Shell — a whopping seven-year deal the team is billing as “2022 and beyond.” In addition, crew chief Todd Gordon’s contract was also extended at the same time. “This was one of those decisions that was a no-brainer,” Logano said. “When you find yourself in an amazing opportunity with a lot of winners around you, that’s great.”
What it means: You don’t see many deals like this in NASCAR anymore, as most contracts with drivers and teams are for three years. This might be the longest contract since Jeff Gordon’s lifetime deal with Hendrick Motorsports. Logano is 26, so in seven years he’ll only be 33 — which is the same age Brad Keselowski is now — and still have perhaps another 10 years ahead of him. Team owner Roger Penske joked the expectations for the new deal are 50 wins — which is nearly unattainable at more than seven per season, but also not out of the question for Logano.
News value (scale of 1-10): Seven. Logano wasn’t expected to go anywhere, but the length of the deal is highly notable. It’s also good news during a week when NASCAR has caught heat nationally for being in decline (through coverage in the Wall Street Journal and on CBS News), which could send a message to prospective sponsors.
Questions: How many races and championships will Logano win over the next seven years? Does this set Logano/Todd Gordon/Penske/Shell to be the next generation’s Jimmie Johnson/Chad Knaus/Hendrick/Lowe’s? How soon will Penske be able to lock up Brad Keselowski in a long-term deal as well?