Sprint Cup Series Race Report - Indianapolis

July 26, 2015

Track:  Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Race:   Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at The Brickyard
Date:   July 26, 2015
No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion – Brad Keselowski
:  31st
Finish: 10th
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 164/164
Laps Led: 17
Points Position (behind leader):  6th (- 139)
Recap: Brad Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion team drove a spirited race, led three times for 17 laps, had to pit from the lead late and went on to settle for a hard-fought 10th-place finish on Sunday afternoon at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Keselowski started 31st and was strong early in the race, passing 12 cars in the first 21 laps. At lap 84, Keselowski took the lead for the first time, working on a differing fuel mileage strategy.  The Team Penske Ford ran in the top-15 most of the day as the various pit strategies played out over the course of the 400-mile event. Keselowski took the lead again at lap 127, again trying to stretch his fuel mileage further than the rest of the field.  Unfortunately, the fuel strategy didn't play out, as Keselowski had to give up the lead and bring his Fusion to the pits with less than 30 laps to go for a final stop, while a majority of the leaders stayed on the track.  Despite falling back to 18th, the Miller Lite team fought back up to 10th to finish the day. The result keeps Keselowski scored sixth in the championship standings, trailing the leader Kevin Harvick by 139 points.

Quote:  "The No. 2 Miller Lite Ford had so much speed by itself and when we get running and the field would spread out, I felt like probably the 4 car and I were the class of the field. On restarts though, I was just awful. Just absolutely atrocious and I couldn't make anything up and kept losing spots. I just didn't have a good balance between the two. I wanted balance and didn't have it. I don't know if that was me or the car. We just can't seem to put it together and that is a lot of what these races are now, they are restart racing. You go hard, go hard and fall in line after a restart, get stuck in everybody's dirty air, wait for a yellow and then race the restart. We probably had as much green flag spread out speed as anyone out there, but we just didn't have the restart speed to make anything of it."
No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion – Joey Logano
Start:  2nd
Finish: 2nd
Status: Running
Laps Completed:  164/164
Laps Led:  28
Points Position (behind first): 2nd (-69)
Recap:  Joey Logano and the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion came up just short of giving team owner Roger Penske his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, finishing second in Sunday's Brickyard 400.  Logano started the race from the second position and jumped to the lead at the green flag with a great start. Logano led the first 11 laps before having to allow the second-place car of Carl Edwards pass him due to a large piece of trash on the grill and rising engine temperatures.  Once in second, Logano was able to get behind Edwards and suck the piece of trash off his grill, but slipped back to fourth.  Logano and crew chief Todd Gordon would stick to their pre-race pit strategy as the field jumbled with a number of different pit calls.  At one point, Logano would slip as far back as 18th during green-flag pit stops, but always raced his way back to the front, taking the lead again on lap 46.  Logano would lead for 28 laps on the day.  Late in the event, Logano used a number of strong restarts to power his way to the second position.  On the second attempt at a green-white-checkered finish, Logano started outside of race leader Kyle Busch.  Logano got another good restart and raced side-by-side with Busch, but a bump from the third place car allowed Busch to pull ahead.  Logano would slot into second place, his best career finish at Indianapolis.  It was Logano's 12th top-five finish of the season and his sixth in the last seven races.  He remains second in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings, 69 points behind leader Kevin Harvick.
Quote:  "I got a good draft down the backstretch and I knew (Kyle) was gonna block the bottom.  I didn't have a good enough run to get underneath him.  All I could do was hope he missed his corner and try to get underneath him that way.  I think he showed all day he was the best car, just working the strategy and it worked out good for them.  We just didn't have enough.  I tried to make some runs and tried to have a good restart there at the end, which we did, but the 78 was there to push him ahead.  I tried to do everything I could do.  When you come here to the Brickyard all you want to do is win and that's it.  It's either win or finish last in my eyes.  That's all that matters when you come to a race track like this.  Second hurts, but I'm proud of this team.  We worked hard throughout this whole weekend.  We didn't unload very good, but pushed hard and qualified second and finished second, but there are no trophies for second."