Talladega: Brad Keselowski preview

FIRST TIME FOR KESELOWSKI -- Saturday's NASCAR Nationwide Series Aaron's 312 will be Brad Keselowski's first race at Talladega Superspeedway. The 24-year-old driver of the No. 88 Navy Accelerate Your Life Chevrolet Monte Carlo has one previous ...

FIRST TIME FOR KESELOWSKI -- Saturday's NASCAR Nationwide Series Aaron's 312 will be Brad Keselowski's first race at Talladega Superspeedway. The 24-year-old driver of the No. 88 Navy Accelerate Your Life Chevrolet Monte Carlo has one previous restrictor plate start in the Nationwide Series. He finished 16th in the season-opener at Daytona.

HOT START -- Keselowski and the No. 88 Navy team are off to a great start in 2008. Nine races into the season, they have scored two top fives and four top-10 finishes. Keselowski is ranked sixth in the Nationwide Series driver point standings, and is the highest Nationwide Series-only driver.

NO. 88 AT TALLADEGA -- The No. 88 Navy team has two prior starts at the 2.66-mile superspeedway. The team's best finish came in 2006 when the Navy Chevrolet finished seventh, earning the team's first top-10 finish in Nationwide Series competition.

COMING HOME -- This weekend's race in Alabama will be a trip home for two members of the No. 88 team. Engineer Damien Dickson hails from Mobile, while engine tuner Jason Ingle is from Hamilton, Ala.

CHASSIS NO. 222 -- The JR Motorsports' No. 88 Navy team will run chassis No. 222 at Talladega. Casey Mears drove this car to an eighth-place finish in last summer's Winn Dixie 250 at Daytona International Speedway.

RACING THE BOSS -- For the fifth time this season, Keselowski will be competing against team owner Dale Earnhardt Jr. in Saturday's Nationwide Series race. With no previous experience at the 2.66-mile superspeedway, Keselowski will try to learn as much as he can during practice from his boss, a restrictor-plate ace who has one Nationwide and five Cup Series wins at Talladega.

USS LAKE ERIE -- The USS Lake Erie (CG 70) is the Navy team's Fleet Honoree for Saturday's race at Talladega. The Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser was commissioned in 1993 in Pearl Harbor. In February 2008, the crew of the USS Lake Erie reached another milestone in National Defense by successfully destroying a malfunctioning United States satellite, preventing the potential spread of the satellite's toxic fuel hydrazine during reentry.

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KESELOWSKI (on making his first start at Talladega) -- "Talladega is one of the last few tracks that I haven't been to yet. I'm sure I'll spend the first bit of practice getting accustomed to the track and learning my way around. We had a decent run at Daytona, so I'll take what I learned about drafting there and use that to help me this weekend."

KESELOWSKI (on racing the team owner Dale Earnhardt Jr.) -- "Having Dale Jr. as a teammate is a really good resource for me this weekend. I don't have any experience at Talladega and he his record there speaks for itself. We'll spend some time in practice running together and I'm sure he'll point out some things that I can do to improve. Then hopefully we'll get to race with each other on Saturday and get a one-two finish for JR Motorsports."

KESELOWSKI (on the 2008 season) -- "The Navy team has had a pretty good season so far. We didn't get off to the best start in the first three races, but we've rebounded since then and posted some really good finishes. I'm really proud of what we were able to do last weekend in Mexico. I didn't have a lot of experience at road courses going into that race and we were able to bring home a top-10 finish. That says a lot about this team. The equipment and the people we've got on the Navy team are incredible."

-credit: jrm

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Casey Mears , Brad Keselowski
Teams JR Motorsports