Keller closest to the NASCAR Busch Series Crown in his Career Keller has finished in the top 10 in the NASCAR Busch Series standings for the past four years, including two runner-up finishes. This is the closest Keller has been to the title in...
Keller closest to the NASCAR Busch Series Crown in his Career
Keller has finished in the top 10 in the NASCAR Busch Series standings for the past four years, including two runner-up finishes. This is the closest Keller has been to the title in his tenure on the circuit. He sits 59 points behind leader David Green with just six races remaining on the schedule.
"This year is a whole different ballgame," said Keller. "It's so hard to get a grip on this championship when there are five guys in the hunt for the title. If anyone stumbles, you don't just lose a few points, but you drop back three spots. This team has an entirely different mindset this year. Last year we knew in the final races, that if we could beat one guy we would win the championship. We can't worry about one guy this year, but we can worry about one team and that is our team. We have momentum after last week and that will help at Charlotte. We overcame a rough start to the weekend at Kansas and walked away with a fourth-place finish. That's what we need to do to win the championship. At this stage of the game it comes down to the team that is the most consistent and creates their own luck."
Keller and the Albertsons team participated in a two-day test at Lowe's Motor Speedway in preparation for the Busch Series race under the lights at the 1.5-mile track. The track is known to be one of the most weather-sensitive tracks on the circuit and the team wanted to be prepared for what the night racing may do to the handling of the Albertsons Ford.
"The Busch Series has never run under the lights at Charlotte," said Keller. "This race is going to be exciting for the drivers and the fans, but there are a lot of unknowns for the Albertsons crew. We used the test to gather as much data on the track as we could. We wanted to figure out some of the tendencies of the track and what we will need to do over the course of the race to adjust to those changes. We are going to be battling teams that have Winston Cup ties who have run at Charlotte at night and that will put us a little behind them. If we utilize our notes and maximize the practice time we have on the track, we should be able to walk away with a top-five finish."
The Albertsons team tested at Lowe's Motor Speedway in preparation for the 29th NASCAR Busch Series race of the season. The team's best finish at the track, a second-place effort, came in October of 2001.
Keller continues the hunt for the Busch Series driver championship at the hub of stock car racing. Keller is currently fifth in the championship standings just 59 points out after his fourth-place finish at Kansas Speedway. At this point last year, Keller was 127 points behind eventual series champion Biffle.
Keller currently holds the record for consecutive starts for an active NASCAR Busch Series driver with 196. The streak began at Richmond in September of 1997. It puts Keller third on all-time list for consecutive starts for a Busch Series driver behind Tommy Houston and Randy Lajoie.
Keller has not used a provisional in the Busch Series since the race at Lowe's Motor Speedway on May 27, 2000. He has qualified on time or by points, when time trials were cancelled, for the past 115 races.