Keselowski, Allmendinger talk about Charlotte 600 race

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SRT Motorsports

Brad Keselowski, Penske Racing Dodge
Brad Keselowski, Penske Racing Dodge

Photo by: Action Sports Photography

Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T) Finished 5th “He (Tony Stewart) took the blame for it but I thought it was my fault. It’s one of those deals where you’re coming in and going out, it’s like being in a Wal-Mart parking lot and you’re both going for the same parking spot and sometimes things happen. We had a decent night. We didn’t make it easy on ourselves. We didn’t have a great night in qualifying, I made some mistakes on pit road, and had the run-in like we just talked about but got through all that. Guess we should be pretty proud of that. We had a fast race car tonight and a good night for the Miller Lite Dodge with the paint scheme for the military on it. It’s something to be proud of but man we really wanted to win tonight.”

YOU HAD SOME STUFF TO OVERCOME FROM PIT ROAD. “You know, I look at tonight and we had a fast race car and really fought track position most of the night. We started to get it and I ran into Tony on pit road. He said it was his fault and I say it’s my fault; we probably both agree that it could have been avoided someway. It’s one of those deals and I guess that’s why they call it racing because things like that happen. That little bit of damage held my car back a little but a good night to come home fifth. Good car, a good couple weeks here in Charlotte, some good runs; just strong and solid and I’m proud of that.”

TALK ABOUT THE INCIDENT WITH STEWART ON PIT ROAD. “Basically I ran into him (smiles). I don’t want to make it any more complicated than that. It’s like going into a Wal-Mart parking lot, you know you’re both going for the same parking spot and don’t know who’s giving and who’s taking. I took and I probably should have gave. Sorry about hurting his day and hurt our day as well but stuff like that’s going to happen in 600 miles.”

TALK ABOUT YOUR RUN OVERALL TO COME BACK STRONG AND GET A TOP FIVE. “That was strong, very strong. I’m proud of it and really happy for two good weekends here in Charlotte.”

YOU HAD A RUN-IN WITH TONY ON PIT ROAD AND CHASED THE RACETRACK. TALK ABOUT YOUR NIGHT ON PIT ROAD AND ON THE TRACK. “We didn’t make it easy on ourselves but it shows the strength of everybody on the Miller Lite Dodge team to bring home a top-five and recover. That’s something to be proud of. A good night, would like to have four more spots though, you know, 600 miles you like to get all that work in and get the victory but it wasn’t meant to be. That’s part of what makes racing 600 miles so much different than other races. Some of it was self-inflicted and some of it was just a little bit of racing luck. That’s part of why I like racing 600 miles - it changes things. It didn’t change ‘em in our favor but that’s okay. One day, it will and if we keep bringing back strong cars like this, we’ll get some victories.”

YOU TOOK FULL ACCOUNTABILITY ON THE RADIO FOR THE INCIDENT WITH STEWART. “Yeah, it’s just one of those deals, man. You’re looking out your blind spot on pit road, grabbed first and they dropped the jack; I dropped the hammer when they dropped the jack. I was launching as he was coming in. You couldn’t time it any better than that. It was like a Hollywood stunt in one take but that’s the way it went.”

THIS WAS A VERY GRUELING RACE. “It’s was a hot 600 miles with lots of long, green-flag runs today. I’m proud of our effort and proud to come home fifth.”

YOUR THOUGHTS ON WHAT HAPPENED ON PIT ROAD. “I just ran into Tony, just bad timing. You do enough green flag pit stops; you’re going to run into people. That’s just the way it went for us today.”

WHAT WAS THE MOST GRUELING PART OF THE RACE FOR YOU? “The end never gets any easier, I can promise you that (smiles). It was wearing me down a little bit but that’s good.”

YOU’RE PRETTY HAPPY WHERE YOU FINISHED? “Absolutely. I mean, how could you be upset with a top five after 600 miles. I don’t think we had anything for Kasey (Kahne) but we were a strong car.”

WE SAW SOME CARS FALL OFF AND OTHERS COME ON DURING THE TRANSITION TONIGHT. “There’s always going to be comers and goers here at Charlotte with the day to night. But we made some good adjustments to make ours go a couple of times and probably didn’t make some adjustments to make it stop sometimes but that’s racing.”

WHAT CAN YOU TAKE AWAY FROM TONIGHT THAT WILL HELP YOU HERE IN OCTOBER? “We were a lot more competitive this time around than we were last spring or fall. And that’s good news.”

DID THE LENGTH OF THE RACE HELP YOU TO OVERCOME THAT EARLY SPEEDING PENALTY? “No doubt, I mean, we came back from a lot and we needed every lap we could get.”

HOW TOUGH WAS THE 600 MILES TONIGHT? “It ain’t easy but it ain’t supposed to be. It was a good, hard race and I’m proud of our effort. Fifth is good; not great, but good. I wasted to get four more sports. To overcome the adversity we did tonight and bring home a fifth, that’s solid and I’m proud of my team.”

HOW DID YOU STAY FOCUSED THROUGH ALL THE ADVERSITY TONIGHT? “Sometimes you don’t. I ain’t going to say I did the whole time but you’ve got to get your head back in the game when you can and we were able to do that.”

DESCRIBE THE INCIDENT WITH TONY STEWART. “Well it’s like pulling into the parking lot at the local Wal-Mart. You’re both just going for the same spot and don’t know who’s giving and who’s taking and I really didn’t see him all that well and ran into him.”

A.J. Allmendinger (No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge Charger) Finished 33rd “Something happened with the left front hub; I’m not sure exactly what happened there. We were never good from the start; we just weren’t good, very fast this weekend. It’s disappointing to have something else break every weekend. We weren’t very good anyway.”

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Series NASCAR-CUP
Tags allmendinger, dodge, keselowski, penske