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Keselowski Retires Early with Engine Issues at Atlanta

September 2, 2013




THE RACE

Advocare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway (1.54-mile oval, Hampton, GA)
Sunday, September 1, 2013

THE RESULTS

The No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion
Driven By Brad Keselowski
Start Position: 23
Finish Position: 35
Status: Engine
Current Driver's Points Position: 15      

THE RACE REVIEW

· Brad Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion team began Sunday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at Atlanta Motor Speedway (AMS) from the 23rd position.

· After making his way up to the 13th position early in the event, the Miller Lite machine began to experience a loose-handling condition in the AMS corners.

· When a caution flag was displayed on lap 25, crew chief Paul Wolfe called for four tires, fuel and no other adjustments to the car. Keselowski and the Miller Lite Fusion restarted the race in the ninth position.

· Keselowski worked his way up to fourth place by lap 50. He radioed to the crew that his Fusion was fast, still handling free off the corners but good in the center of the turns.

· As the race progressed, Keselowski was able to work his way back up to the fourth position before the caution flag flew for the fifth time on lap 206. Wolfe called for an air pressure adjustment to give his driver a comfort level that he needed, the team was able to gain a position on pit road and Keselowski restarted from the third position on lap 212.

· By lap 213, Keselowski had captured the lead of the race and was posting the fastest laps on track. Though the car was now handling a little tight in the center of the turns and a little loose entering and exiting the corners, Keselowski led the next 31 laps and looked to be headed toward a strong finish.

· On lap 243, Keselowski radioed to the team that his car was down a cylinder and losing oil pressure. Keselowski fell two laps down and by lap 307, the Miller Lite Ford had to retire from the race.

· Keselowski finished the race in the 35th position. With the Sunday night’s result, Keselowski is now positioned 15th in the NSCS driver point standings. He is 28 points behind 10th-place with next week’s race at Richmond remaining before the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship  begins.

WHAT THEY ARE SAYING

BRAD KESELOWSKI

WHAT CHALLENGES DO YOU FACE NOW AT RICHMOND TO QUALIFY FOR THE CHASE?

“We don’t dictate our own fate, which is never good.  Obviously, we have the speed and performance to get there, but we haven’t put together the execution or the luck.  There’s only so much you can control.  Maybe this was control and maybe it wasn’t, I don’t know until the guys take it apart and look at it, but we ran up front and we continue to show that we at least have the pieces of what it takes every week to be a title threat and to be in the Chase, but we just haven’t put together all those pieces every week and that’s what it takes.  That doesn’t mean we don’t have what it takes, we just don’t have the consistency in putting all those pieces together this year.  I know that all those pieces could come together tomorrow.  Unfortunately, it didn’t come together today and that’s what matters the most.”