Las Vegas: Brad Keselowski race report

Keselowski Finishes 26th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway LAS VEGAS, Nev. (February 28, 2010) -- Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 12 Penske Dodge Charger in the NASCAR Cup Series, finished 26th in the Shelby American at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on...

Keselowski Finishes 26th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

LAS VEGAS, Nev. (February 28, 2010) -- Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 12 Penske Dodge Charger in the NASCAR Cup Series, finished 26th in the Shelby American at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday. A loose-handling race car prevented the first-year Penske Racing driver from capitalizing on a solid qualifying effort.

Sunday's event began under the best weather conditions of the weekend. While nice for the fans, the changing conditions provided a challenge for the teams as it completely altered the setup needed for victory.

As the green flag fell, Keselowski radioed that the Penske Dodge was running too loose and the condition caused him to wait too long to get back on the throttle. While the leaders set a very fast race pace, Keselowski did a great job holding on to the lead lap. A lap 45 caution flag brought the No. 12 down pit road for service, which included wedge and air pressure adjustments.

The loose condition continued when another caution period flew over the field on lap 53. When the race resumed, Keselowski told crew chief Jay Guy that the previous adjustments had a positive effect on the car's handling, but that it was simply too loose to make up any ground on the cars in front of him. The entry into the corners is where Keselowski was losing the most time and he eventually fell a lap down to the race leaders.

A right rear spring rubber adjustment on lap 159 allowed Keselowski to become racier with the cars running on his lap and he began posting some of the best lap times of the day. However, two consecutive pit road penalties, late in the race, would drop Keselowski five spots down in the running order and he fell two more laps off the pace of the leaders

Guy kept Keselowski on the track under a lap 228 caution to allow him to receive a "waive around" that helped earn back one of the lost laps as there was enough fuel in the No. 12 Dodge Charger to make it to the checkered flag. Keselowski wound up finishing 26th in the running order.

Penske Racing teammates Sam Hornish, Jr. and Kurt Busch finished the race in 28th and 35th place, respectively.

Following the third race of the season, Keselowski is ranked 30th in the 2010 NASCAR Cup Series driver points standings.

"It was a long day," said Keselowski. "We thought that we were going to be faster than we were today. It just wasn't in the cards for our Penske Dodge. We worked really hard all day trying to make it faster and better, but we just couldn't find that one thing that could make us really good. It's disappointing. It's a long season. We've got a lot more work to do and we'll keep working hard every time that we head to the race track."

The No. 12 Penske Dodge Charger team will move to the state of Georgia this week for the Kobalt Tools 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

-source: penske racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Kurt Busch , Brad Keselowski , Sam Hornis
Teams Team Penske