Pure Michigan 400
Michigan International Speedway (two-mile speedway )
Sunday, August 17, 2014
The No. 2 Miller Lite Ford
Driver: Brad Keselowski
Starting Position: 5
Finish Position: 8
Driver's Points Position: 3
THE RACE REVIEW
· Brad Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford team started the Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway (MIS) from the fifth position based on the results of Friday’s qualifying sessions. The result marked Keselowski’s 15th top-five start of the 2014 season.
· As Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race began, Keselowski held position inside the top five. When a NASCAR-mandated competition caution flag flew at lap 20, he had moved up to the fourth position.
· During that first pit stop, crew chief Paul Wolfe called for fuel only which allowed the Miller Lite Ford Fusion to restart from the third position at lap 24. Over the first quarter of the 200-lap event, Keselowski ran steadily inside the top five.
· Over the course of the afternoon, Keselowski reported that the Miller Lite Ford was handling tight in the center of the MIS turns and a little loose exiting the corners. The team made slight air pressure adjustments to fine tune the Team Penske Ford’s handling.
· Through middle of the race, various pit and fuel strategies came into play and the running order became shuffled. At one point, the No. 2 Ford dropped to 21st place but then eventually moved into the race lead as an example of the wide range of position, depending on where it was in the pit cycle.
· In the final quarter of the race, Keselowski radioed that the Miller Lite Ford was the best it had been all day. Just 20 laps later, the right front tire blew out which caused the No. 2 machine to make contact with the outside wall. The impact resulted in moderate damage, but the Miller Lite pit crew was able to repair the wounded machine while keeping their driver on the lead lap.
· As he was forced to visit pit lane while the pits were closed, Keselowski had to start at the back of the pack – scored 17th when the action resumed at lap 173.
· In the closing stage of the race, Keselowski battled his way back up to eighth place, earning his 11th top-10 finish of the season. The result allowed Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford team to hold steady at third in the point standings, now trailing leader Jeff Gordon by 83 points.
· Keselowski also holds the third position in the Chase Grid Outlook as he is one of only four drivers to have three victories this year.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING
BRAD KESELOWSKI, NO. 2 MILLER LITE FORD
WAS THIS A GOOD FINISH CONSIDERING YOU HAD A TIRE BLOW LATE IN THE RACE?
“That was a good finish to come home eighth after hitting the wall. We had some pretty good adversity there with the blown tire. I am not sure why that happened. We didn’t have any indication of it and there was no real reason to. I was about the least aggressive you could be and did a run before that where I was more aggressive and didn’t even come close to showing signs of an issue. I don’t know. I think we just got a bad tire. It is hard to say but the team did a hell of a job to overcome that and get an eighth-place finish out of what should have been probably a 25th-or 30th-place finish.”