Making his first formal comments since leaving Martinsville Speedway on Sunday, Joey Logano did his best to deflect attention from the incident in which he was deliberately wrecked by Matt Kenseth.
"What happened has happened," Logano said Friday morning at Texas Motor Speedway. "It's in the past at this point. It's in the rearview mirror. The only way we're going to get in the Chase is if we keep looking out of the windshield."
More from FoxSports
Thursday, both the National Motorsports Appeal Panel and National Motorsports Final Appeals Officer Bryan Moss upheld NASCAR's two-race suspension of Kenseth for intentionally running Logano into the wall at the Virginia short track.
"What NASCAR has set out there and made for decisions, a lot of that is not up to me," Logano said. "I didn't talk to anyone, really, after the race. I just went on with our own thing and focused on how to win at Texas. The message that has been sent is obviously you can't do that, right?"
At Martinsville, Logano appeared to be on his way to a seventh victory -- which would have been his fourth in a row -- when Kenseth drove both cars into the wall. That victory -- which ultimately went to Hendrick Motorsports' Jeff Gordon -- would have punched Logano's ticket to the winner-take-all Championship Round at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Despite his feud with Kenseth boiling over at Martinsville, Logano said there is nothing he would do differently after Kansas, and he still sees that incident with Kenseth as a racing deal.
"I'm confident in the decisions that we made. I'm confident in the decisions I've made as a driver. I'm confident in the decisions we've made as a team," said Logano. "That was a racing thing, what happened in Kansas. I wouldn't expect a phone call from someone else if that happened.
"That was not the way you ever want to see a to race end. You want to battle it out all the way to the end," he said of the incident at Kansas, where contact with Kenseth sent the No. 20 JGR Toyota spinning out of contention. "You don't want to see that happen. But, when I looked at it and the more I looked at it, it was just a racing thing. It just happened. It's unfortunate. I would understand if it happened to me. He was racing for the win. He was doing what he had to do. He knew the chances and the risks that he was taking, I would assume. From my point of view, I would of if I was driving the car. But everyone is entitled to their own opinion."
Those opinions certainly ranged this week, as fans were fired up following the incident at Martinsville. After the wreck, fans in the grandstands went wild, while many on social media sided with Kenseth. On Friday, Logano did not mince words when asked about the fan reaction.
"Was I surprised to see the fans' reaction after something like that happen last week? Yes, I was. I was disgusted by it," he said. "That was not what I think any racer would expect out of it. But I'm going to look at the silver lining at this one. There are more 22 T-shirts and Joey Logano T-shirts and hats walking around -- when we were leaving Martinsville I noticed that. I said, 'Man, there are more fans that root for me now than ever before.' That's pretty cool. So, instead of listening to the critics and listening to the fans that may not like me, I'm going to look at the silver lining and say I have more fans than I've ever had before, and I love it and appreciate every one of them."
Logano said the team is using the controversy as a motivational tool as it prepares to climb back from last weekend's setback, which put them 28 points behind the Chase cutoff.
"I'm not convinced it's a bad thing," Logano said of the controversy surrounding his team. "Our team is more fired up than ever. I'm more focused than ever. I'm pretty pumped up about being at the racetrack today. What happened last week is what happened last week. Is it the way we wanted it to go? No, of course not. Did we get the finish we felt we deserved? No, but this team has plenty of confidence. We're coming off three (wins) in a row and possibly almost four -- we were in a good position to do it. There's plenty of confidence and there's more drive now than there's ever been."
With only two races left before the Championship 4 is set, Logano has a great chance to win at Texas Motor Speedway. In his five TMS races since joining Team Penske in 2013, Logano has one win, four top fives and five finishes of 12th or better.