Team Penske NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race Report - Kansas

May 10, 2015

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Race Report


Track:  Kansas Speedway

Race:   SpongeBob SquarePants 400

Date:   May 9, 2015

No. 2 AVAYA Ford Fusion – Brad Keselowski

Start:  3rd

Finish: 7th

Status: Running

Laps Completed:  267/267

Laps Led: 43

Points Position (behind leader):  6th (-94)

Recap: Brad Keselowski and the No. 2 AVAYA Ford Fusion had a strong showing in Saturday night’s SpongeBob SquarePants 400. Keselowski ran in the top-10 for most of the night, leading 43 laps en route to a seventh-place finish. The No. 2 Ford started from the third position as the race began under cloudy skies and a threat of rain, which came at lap 95 and resulted in a two-plus hour red flag. The Ford Fusion of Keselowski was strong out front, though not as good in traffic. The team executed well on the track and in the pit box over the course of the 267-lap race.  Over the closing laps of the race, Keselowski battled a car that was struggling in traffic, yet brought home a solid seventh-place result. The finish, his seventh top-10 of the season, allowed the No. 2 Team Penske Ford driver to hold on to the sixth place in the point standings, trailing the leader Kevin Harvick by 94 points.

Quote:  “We had a Ford Fusion that was great in clean air as we were able to lead several laps after staying out during the first caution after the red flag. Our AVAYA Ford was not quite as strong in traffic and, while the crew did a great job in the pits, we just didn’t catch the break we needed to maintain track position to challenge for the win.”

No. 22 AAA Insurance Ford Fusion – Joey Logano

Start:  1st (12-career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pole)

Finish: 5th

Status: Running

Laps Completed:  267/267

Laps Led:  29

Points Position (behind first):  4th (-62)

Recap:  Joey Logano, driver of the No. 22 AAA Insurance Ford Fusion, overcame several miscues throughout the evening to earn his sixth top-five finish of the season, coming home fifth in the SpongeBob SquarePants 400 at Kansas Speedway in a race that ended early Sunday morning.  Logano started from the pole, his fourth of the year and the 12th of his career, and led the first 29 laps of the event.  Logano was a mainstay in the top-three until rains came just before the lap 100 mark, which halted action for over two hours.  When the race finally resumed, Logano had to serve a penalty for a pit road violation, dropping him all the way back to 32nd.  The speed of the No. 22 AAA Fusion showed over the next 30 laps, as Logano raced his way back into the top-10 and eventually back into the top-five.  Another pit road miscue on lap 186 came when Logano pitted while pit road was still closed, dropping him back in the field again, this time to 22nd. Logano’s speed once again showed and the 24-year-old raced back to the top-10 in just 15 laps. Late in the race, Logano and crew chief Todd Gordon made a call for four tires during a caution with less than 10 laps to go.  Over the final six laps, Logano raced from 12th up to fifth at the checkers. Logano passed a remarkable 147 cars during the course of the event. With the top-five finish, Logano remains fourth in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings, 62 behind leader Kevin Harvick.   

Quote:  “Passing all those cars was fun but the rest of it we just did a terrible job of executing this race. We made mistake after mistake. Whether it was me on pit road or everything we did it seemed. We had a fast AAA Insurance Ford Fusion and that is what saved us. Execution was not very good tonight and we all just have to raise our game a little bit and understand why we made mistakes and clean it up going forward.”