Keselowski's Top-5 At Phoenix Not Enough To Advance

November 10, 2014


THE RACE

Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500
Phoenix International Raceway
Sunday, November 9

THE RESULTS

The No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion
Driver:  Brad Keselowski

Starting Position: 2
Finish Position: 4
Driver's Points Position: 7
 


THE RACE REVIEW

· Brad Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford team started Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at Phoenix International Raceway from the front row in the second position. The solid qualifying result marked Keselowski’s 13th front row start this year.

· As the race began, Keselowski slipped back to fifth place as the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford was lacking turn and drive coming off of the corners.

· The Miller Lite crew made air pressure and chassis adjustments over the course of the race to improve the Ford Fusion’s handling.

· Keselowski spent the majority of the first half of the race running in the top five as he searched for the fastest way around the unique one-mile desert oval.

· As the race wore on with long green-flag runs, Keselowski reported to the Miller Lite team that he was doing his best to take care of his car and his tires as he continued to run among the leaders.

· Knowing that he likely needed a win to advance to the championship round of the Chase, Keselowski looked for his opportunities in the closing stages on Sunday. There were two chances over the final laps for Keselowski to make a bold move, as cautions at lap 287 and lap 296 forced race restarts and provided an opportunity to charge to the front.  The No. 4 car driven by eventual race winner Kevin Harvick was too strong on each restart, however, and the Miller Lite team had to settle for a hard-fought fourth-place finish.

· Unfortunately, the result was not enough to for Keselowski to advance to the final round of the Chase next weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Despite top-five finishes in three of the last four races, Keselowski is now ranked seventh in the point standings as the top four drivers advance to the championship round.
    


WHAT THEY ARE SAYING

BRAD KESELOWSKI, NO. 2 MILLER LITE FORD

A GREAT EFFORT BUT YOU CAME UP SHORT FOR THE WIN AND A CHANCE TO ADVANCE TO THE FINAL ROUND. HOW ARE YOU FEELING?

“We were a little bit short. I’m obviously a little disappointed. I’m not disappointed with the effort, just disappointed it didn’t work out. We just couldn’t overcome the Martinsville hurdle. We had a decent day, but we needed a win to overcome the week we had at Martinsville where we broke the gear. We just weren’t quite fast enough to pull that off the last two weeks and that’s what it was going to take.  It’s been a good effort. It’s been a great year. It’s nothing to hang our head on.  We controlled the things we could control for the most part and that’s just how this deal works.”

WAS IT GOING TO TAKE THE BEST CAR TO ADVANCE TODAY?

“We weren’t the best car today. We were a third- to fifth-place car and we finished fourth. I’m not happy with that, but it could be worse. We put in solid efforts, solid runs and it just wasn’t enough today.”

YOU WON THE MOST RACES THIS YEAR BUT YOU DIDN’T ADVANCE TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND. HOW DOES THAT MAKE YOU FEEL?

“It doesn’t feel good to have won the most races and not being in it at Homestead, but it still feels like it has been a great season, winning six races. Nobody is going to win any more than that, and that’s something we’re proud of.”