Winning Team Indy IRP Post-Race Interview

Indy Raceway Park

BRAD KESELOWSKI (No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T) Finished 1st

“I’m not sure what happened at the end of that race. I’m going to have to go back and watch it on TV to fully understand what happened. The 16 car blew up. The 31 caught on fire. We ended up restarted in second position on the outside lane and I knew that if I could get around the 6 car that we had a shot at the win. I had a great short-run car that could give Ricky (Stenhouse Jr.) a run for his money. If the race was two of three laps longer, I’m sure Ricky would have drove around us. Our Discount Tire Dodge Challenger was great on the short run. It’s great to get back to victory lane again.

“Indy has always meant a lot to me. Coming from Michigan and this being a track that I always drove to, I’ve never missed a race here in all the years as a fan, spectator, kid, mechanic and a driver; it’s a place that I always enjoyed coming to. I’m glad to be able to sit in victory lane as a driver for the first time here. What’s so special about this place is that I have a lot of family on the west side of the state, some of them are here today and I saw them up in the grandstands. It’s just a privilege to win around people that you grew up with and you know. It’s almost like a second home track for me. It’s a real pleasure and honor to win here.”

Brad Keselowski
Brad Keselowski

Photo by: Action Sports Photography

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE RESTART? “I just knew that I needed to get a good restart. He still beat me; we drove into (turns) 1 and 2 and he had a great run, he was clearing me. So I crossed back over, got back to the bottom and raced him into 3. The next thing I knew I was in the lead.”

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO WIN AT THIS TRACK? “It’s a very special win being from Michigan. I’ve been coming to this race track for years. I’ve been to victory lane as a team guy and a mechanic, but never a driver. It’s so special to win her and win here in a Dodge.”

WHAT DID YOU THINK WAS GOING ON WHEN THE 31 PULLED OUT OF LINE ON FIRE? “It was certainly a key factor in winning the race. I knew that if I could get to the front row with the short run speed that my car had and knowing that Ricky was struggling with short run speed, he had great long run speed, I knew that was going to be a huge deciding factor in my favor. Watching the 31 car, he was on fire for a really long time. It was really unfortunate for him. That’s a crazy way to get taken out of a chance to win a race. It worked out in our favor. It was an amazing break, an amazing opportunity. As a team, we were able to capitalize on it and close it out.”

WOULD YOU BE IN FAVOR OF KEEPING THIS TRACK ON THE SCHEDULE NEXT YEAR? “Absolutely. I’m a big fan of keeping this race track on the schedule, speaking back to the heritage that it has to me and my family. For the sport in general, it’s been a part of the Nationwide Series for a long, long time. Event the sponsor of the race, Kroger, has been a part of the series for a long time. There’s a lot of honor and tradition that goes with that. It’s certainly something that we’d like to keep. Hopefully, something will get worked out. I think short track racing in general is great for the sport. It can be tough. It can be frustrating for the drivers. It’s some of the best races to watch for the fans. Heck, even I enjoy it; I like to watch it when I’m not driving. I’ll watch every short track race. I really think it’s a big part of our sport and what it was built on. I’d love to see this race track try and find a way to get another race.”

***

TODD GORDON (crew chief, No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger R/T) “A great win for us. We’re just trying to make our race cars better each week and make the best of the opportunities that we got. I think tonight played out that way. The Roush camp was pretty strong tonight. I felt that we had a fifth-place car on the long run. That’s one of the things that Brad and I talked about in practice, that we had extremely good short-run speed, but didn’t have a long-run speed car. We made several efforts in practice to try and find that long-run speed. Finally at the end we sat in the hauler and said we have to go where we know that we can make something happen and that was put the short-run speed back in the car. We did that and worked on it all night to try a get a little bit more out of it. I think that we made improvements, but I don’t think that we made enough. We put ourselves in position to take advantage and I’m proud of the race team for getting us there.”

***

TRAVIS GEISLER (Director of Competition, Penske Racing)

“I don’t even think the Captain can put together a game plan for how that race finished. I’m really proud of this entire No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge team. They just keep on battling and tonight they brought home a great win. Brad and Todd (Gordon) had worked so hard to continue the success that this team had last season. Everybody at the shop has been working hard and it’s nice to see this Discount Tire Dodge back in victory lane.”

By: dodge motorsports

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Brad Keselowski
Teams Team Penske
Tags clermont, dodge, indianapolis, indy irp, keselowski, nascar, nationwide, penske, raceway park