Brad Keselowski Does "Monday Double" at Texas Motor Speedway

April 20, 2010

FORT WORTH, Texas (April 19, 2010) – Penske Racing’s Brad Keselowski defined the role of a double-duty driver on Monday at Texas Motor Speedway. The 26-year-old driver finished 14th in the No. 12 Penske Dodge Charger in the Samsung Mobile 500 NASCAR Cup Series race. He followed that up with a fourth-place finish in the No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Charger in the O’Reilly 300 Nationwide Series event. Keselowski was one of 15 drivers to compete in both races that totaled 800 miles on the day.

Persistent rain in the Dallas-Fort Worth area over the weekend forced the NASCAR Cup Series and Nationwide Series races to be run on the same day for the first time since the fall events at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway in 2008.

For Keselowski, the day began at 10:30 a.m. with driver introductions for the Cup Series event. He began the race from the 37th position and drove conservatively for the first 25 laps when NASCAR called a competition caution to allow teams to assess their tire wear on the “green” racetrack. After radioing to crew chief Jay Guy that he had a tight-handling condition on his No. 12 Dodge, Guy brought Keselowski down pit road on lap 77 for chassis adjustments. While sitting in his pit box, the caution flag flew for an accident and Keselowski found himself two laps down to the leaders. Since he was in his pit box when the caution came, he was allowed to receive a “wave around” prior to the race restart, which enabled him to gain a lap back. 

After working to get himself in position to receive the “Lucky Dog” free pass, Keselowski was able to return to lead-lap racing when another caution flag fell on lap 199. Once back on the lead lap, Keselowski radioed that he was happy with the chassis condition on the Penske Dodge. This changed, however, when the car developed a severe vibration that required an early trip to pit road. The vibration appeared to be from a worn Goodyear tire and it was alleviated by changing all four tires on the pit stop. 

In a moment of déjà vu, Keselowski found himself on pit road once again when the caution flag fell on lap 234. The driver again fell two laps down, but Keselowski then received the wave around to regain one of the laps. When another caution flag flew on lap 310, Keselowski had lost another lap to the leaders and Guy kept his driver on course to gamble on gaining valuable track position. This proved to be a wise move as Keselowski received another wave around – placing him only one lap down to the race leaders – and it placed him far enough behind a nine-car accident on lap 317 that he was able to avoid any damage. When the race restarted for the final time, Keselowski was able to pass all of the cars on his lap to finish 14th for his third top-15 finish of the season.

Penske Racing teammates Kurt Busch and Sam Hornish, Jr. finished fourth and 19th, respectively.

Following the eighth race of the season, Keselowski currently sits 25th in the 2010 NASCAR Cup Series driver and owner point standings.

Immediately following the Cup Series race, Keselowski made his way back to the driver introduction stage for the start of pre-race activities for the Nationwide Series race. For the second consecutive race, Keselowski was a victim of track conditions during qualifying. The sun broke through the clouds during his time trial and, as a result, the slick conditions relegated Keselowski to a 12th-place starting spot.

NASCAR announced that the Nationwide Series race would also feature a lap 25 competition caution. Keselowski ran cautiously in the Discount Tire Dodge until the yellow flag fell before bringing his car down pit road for chassis adjustments to fix a loose-handling condition. Upon restarting the race on lap 31, Keselowski’s Charger “bottomed out” getting into Turn 1. He lost six spots in the running order as a result and the situation continued to be a problem that plagued the team on restarts throughout the race.

On lap 91, Keselowski entered the top-10 in the running order for the first time. The No. 22 would remain one of the fastest cars on the track for the next 50 laps. The first visit by the Discount Tire Dodge Charger inside the top-five came on lap 143.

Keselowski entered the race riding a streak of five consecutive top-five finishes. He looked to be in position to make it six in a row late in the race until he lost six positions on a lap 173 restart. However, a fast race car and brilliant moves behind the wheel resulted in Keselowski rallying to extend the streak with a fourth-place finish.

Penske Racing teammate Justin Allgaier finished 11th in the race.

Following the seventh race of the season, Keselowski currently sits second in the 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series driver and owner point standings, only 20 points behind leader Kyle Busch.

“Man, that was a long day,” said Keselowski. “800 miles in one day is not something I want to do again anytime soon. We had two strong cars with the No. 12 Penske Dodge Charger and the No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Charger, but nothing came easy for us today. We probably stole a top-15 finish in the Cup race, but we’ve also had good finishes taken away from us this year. All in all, it was a very good points day for us in both series. We’ll take it and go to Talladega.”

Both the No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Charger team and the No. 12 Penske Dodge Charger teams will move to the state of Alabama for the Aaron’s 312 and Aaron’s 499 at Talladega Superspeedway. The Nationwide Series race will be seen live on Saturday afternoon, April 24, on the ABC television network beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET. The Cup Series event will be broadcast live on Sunday afternoon, April 25 on the FOX television network beginning at 1:00 p.m. ET.  Both races can also be heard live on MRN Radio, as well as Sirius Satellite Radio Channel 128.


Brad Keselowski Samsung Mobile 500 Race Statistics
Start: 37 
Finish: 14   
Laps: 333/334
Laps Led: 0
Status: Running
Points Position: 25th  

Brad Keselowski O’Reilly 300 Race Statistics
Start: 12
Finish: 4   
Laps: 200/200
Laps Led: 0
Status: Running
Points Position: Second