Keselowski Battles To A Second-Place Finish In New England 200 LOUDON, N.H. (June 26, 2010) - Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 22 Ruby Tuesday Dodge Charger, led the Penske Racing Nationwide Series drivers at New Hampshire Motor Speedway...
Keselowski Battles To A Second-Place Finish In New England 200
LOUDON, N.H. (June 26, 2010) - Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 22 Ruby Tuesday Dodge Charger, led the Penske Racing Nationwide Series drivers at New Hampshire Motor Speedway posting a second-place finish on Saturday afternoon. He took advantage of a late-race caution to charge from fourth to a second-place finish.
Keselowski continues to lead the Nationwide Series driver point standings by 247 points over second-place contender Carl Edwards. Keselowski started the race from the pole position after turning a lap of 29.376 seconds, at a speed of 129.657 mph around the 1.058-mile oval in Saturday morning's qualifying session. The effort is Keselowski's third pole of the season and the first pole he has earned at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
The race began under cloudy skies, with light sprinkles and the threat of rain. Keselowski took the green flag and immediately began to open up a multiple car lead on the field. On lap seven, the yellow flag was displayed for a two-car accident in Turn 1. On the restart at lap 10, Keselowski was passed by Kyle Busch who held the lead until lap 16, at which point Keselowski drove the Ruby Tuesday Dodge back to the front.
As the race progressed, Keselowski radioed that the car was a little tight on the exit of the turns. By lap 43, the No. 22 Dodge began pushing to the point that Keselowski relinquished the lead and fell back to second-place and then two additional positions to fourth.
At that point, Keselowski reported that the car was falling over on the right-front tire and continued to push. On lap 78, the No. 22 Dodge came down pit lane for a green-flag pit stop. The Ruby Tuesday crew put on four fresh Goodyear tires and filled the car with Sunoco racing fuel with the only change being an air pressure adjustment.
Keselowski rejoined the field in fourth place and held that spot until the caution flew on lap 93. At this juncture, Keselowski stayed out on track when everyone else pitted which placed him back at the front. Keselowski was able to hold on to the lead through lap 120, at which time the car once again developed a tight-handling condition.
By lap 146, Keselowski had fallen back to third and then another caution flag came out. The No. 22 Dodge came down pit lane for service in fourth place and left the pits in eighth due to a slow pit stop. On the restart on lap 151, Keselowski quickly went to work and was able to make it back to the fourth position by lap 157. He held on to fourth place for the next 20 laps when another yellow flag was displayed.
On lap 182, the green flag waved to restart the race and Keselowski drove the car into second place. Keselowski put forth a spirited effort, turning some outstanding laps, but came up just short and had to settle for a second-place finish, which is his series leading 13th top-five finish of the season.
Penske racing teammate Justin Allgaier finished sixth.
"It was a really good race for our Ruby Tuesday Dodge Charger," said Keselowski. "It all came down to that final restart. The 20 and 18 were going really hard and it looked like Joey (Logano) spun his tires a little bit and jumbled everything up and I was able to make up some spots. Some weeks that goes to your advantage and other weeks it goes against you. We had a car that was pretty good. We made some adjustments there at the end and got our Dodge as good as it was going to get. It came down to track position and we just didn't quite have it. I'm happy to come out of here with a second-place finish."
The No.22 Ruby Tuesday Dodge Charger team will move to the Daytona International Speedway next weekend for the Subway Jalapeno 250 powered by Coca-Cola.
-source: penske racing