Amanda Vincent, NASCAR Correspondent
Keselowski takes dominating win, Edwards, Scott finish 2nd & 3rd
Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 22 Penske Racing Dodge, dominated the Dollar General 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Chicagoland Speedway on Saturday, leading 158 of 200 laps, en route to the race win. Carl Edwards finished second in the No. 60 Roush Fenway Racing Ford, and Brian Scott was third in the No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.
“We unloaded fast and started the race pretty fast,” No. 22 crew chief Todd Gordon said.
“We unloaded fast and started the race pretty fast.
Scott started the race from the pole, and Keselowski started beside him on the front row. Keselowski claimed the top spot on lap two and built up a lead of nearly seven seconds by lap 45 when the second caution of the race came out for debris.
Keselowski got off pit road first during that caution but lost the lead to Paul Menard in the No. 33 Kevin Harvick Inc. Chevrolet soon after the restart. He got back to the top spot on lap 52.
Edwards took the lead from Keselowski when the two got caught up in lap traffic on lap 90. Edwards then began to pull away.
The race stayed green the rest of the way, resulting in two cycles of green-flag pit stops during the final run of the race.
“The way the first couple of cautions fell, I thought the final run would be a long one,” Scott said.
Most drivers made stops between laps 115 and 120, but Edwards -- still in the lead -- stayed out on track several laps longer. He finally headed down pit road with 77 laps to go, just in the nick of time. Edwards’ car sputtered as it ran on fumes down pit road and nearly stalled pulling out of the pit stall, costing him precious track time.
Keselowski cycled back to the lead, as Elliott Sadler’s No. 2 Kevin Harvick Inc. Chevrolet occupied the second spot as the field cycled through stops. Edwards wound up third, nine seconds behind Keselowski, after having a nearly three-second lead on Keselowski before the round of stops began.
After falling back through the field early in the race, Scott worked his way up to the second position with 65 laps remaining. Scott held on to second until the final round of pit stops got underway with 39 laps to go. He barely beat Edwards off of pit road, but Edwards quickly took second from him on the race track.
Keselowski continued to lead after the final round of pit stops and built his lead back up to about seven-and-a-half seconds with about 20 laps to go.
According to Keselowski, the dominant win gives him just what he needs to make his first Chase for the Sprint Cup start, the GEICO 400 to be held at the track on Sunday.
Aric Almirola finished fourth in the No. 88 JR Motorsports Chevrolet, and Sam Hornish Jr. rounded out the top-five in the No. 12 Penske Racing Dodge.Race Results and current Championship Standings