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Aug 24, 2014 - 06:28 AM
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2014 Bristol II: Brad Keselowski NASCAR Sprint Cup Post-Race Press Conference
Posted by: ASkyler on Aug 24, 2014 - 06:26 AM
2014 Bristol II: Brad Keselowski NASCAR Sprint Cup Post-Race Press Conference

BRAD KESELOWSKI - No. 2 Hurst Ford Fusion - PRESS CONFERENCE - "That was a hard night. First off, the race pace here is really brutal and aggressive. With the cars having all the extra downforce this year and tires improving and some of the new rules compounded by grinding the track and the track’s high lane having a lot of speed, I swear this is the most grueling race of the year. So it feels good just to complete it and be able to kind of look myself in the eye and know I gave it all I had and it just wasn’t enough, but I didn’t fall out of the seat. I’m damn near as proud of not falling out of the seat as I am anything else, but it was a heckuva weekend for everyone at Team Penske. All three drivers winning races this weekend. I think that’s a testament to how bright the future is for Team Penske and I look for more big things to come and years to come, but certainly don’t want to lose sight of tonight’s accomplishments and accomplishments to date. I feel like Joey and I both have three wins. We’re entering the Chase strong in a lot of different ways, and I think we’re both legitimate threats to win the championship this year and I’m proud of that, and along with the Nationwide car and the success they had last night, then winning in the Truck Series just a huge weekend, not just for me personally but for everyone at Team Penske and hopefully we can keep that momentum rolling in weeks to come. As far as tonight and the rest of it is concerned, running second is certainly something to be proud of. I’d love to have that one more position, but it just wasn’t there. Everytime I’d get close to Joey I’d pick up a massive aero-push up off the corner and just couldn’t do anything. I lost too much speed to really even do anything. I couldn’t even get close enough to really do a bump-and-run. The last lap I just dive-bombed it in there on a prayer and kind of hoping it would stick or he would slip or something would happen for me, and made it look cool, but it really wasn’t that close. Still, it was a really good night. I think our two cars were really, really equal and whoever got out front and got the clean air first was gonna win the race and Joey was able to do that."


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CAN YOU TALK ABOUT YOUR MOMENTUM AND HOW MUCH DO THE 2 AND 22 SHARE? "The momentum kind of speaks for itself when you’re running well. I don’t really respectfully want to get into any of the other details about our teams and what they do. That’s kind of proprietary to our group and something we’re proud of and want to keep our cards close to our chest, but I think the results speak for themselves and we need to keep rolling. We’ve got two teams that are legitimate contenders by every stretch of the imagination, so I’m very proud of that."

AT WHAT POINT DO YOU FOCUS ON WORKING TOGETHER OR INDIVIDUALLY IN THE CHASE? "I think that’s not really something I want to disclose in the media. That’s between Joey and I and we’ve developed a pretty good friendship. Certainly, we’re both hungry to be winners though and there’s a balancing act there. But it’s something I’d like to just keep between Joey and I."

BRAD KESELOWSKI CONTINUED -- WHAT IS YOUR STRENGTH IN THE CHASE AND WHAT IS JOEY’S STRENGTH? "I think we ran really well at Loudon. I think that’s a track we’re very much looking forward to going back to and continue that success. Joey is really, really strong on the mile-and-a-halves and I’d expect him to be good at all of those. It’s hard to say because going into Kentucky I would have said that Joey’s style would have been better than mine, but we ran so well there. He certainly ran well, too, but it takes everything. It takes the car setup, it takes the driver, it takes the pit crew. The pieces that the guys back in the shop are doing, it takes all those pieces to be a contender. We’re out of the same shop, but it’s easy for one of the variables to be different, whether it’s the car setup or pit crew. Even if the actual car builids are the same just small details make all the difference in the world. It’s hard to say that either one of us has an advantage, and I think we’re heading into it pretty equal."

WERE YOU BUMPING JOEY AT ONE POINT? "No, maybe Matt was. I saw a couple instances where Matt might have been, but I didn’t have any moments. We were just racing hard. One time I rubbed into him a little bit, but it was just minor. I didn’t think there was anything there."

HOW MENTALLY DEMANDING WAS THIS RACE AND WAS IT THE MOST DEMANDING OF THE YEAR OVERALL? "I think it was as tough a race as I’ve ever been a part of. The pace is just grueling and mentally the lap traffic and the top and the bottom lane just keeps flying on you and there are a lot of laps too - 500 laps. It’s tough and the mental side always comes into play in racing, but tonight probably to its most extreme."

DO YOU THINK JOEY HAS A LEGITIMATE SHOT TO WIN THE TITLE? "I think he has a tremendous shot at winning the championship and I don’t underestimate him. I don’t want to speak for my competition and what they think, I’ll let them speak for themselves."

HOW MUCH HAVE YOU BEEN THINKING ABOUT THE CHASE VERSUS THE REMAINDER OF THE REGULAR SEASON. DO YOU VIEW THIS AS A PENSKE/HENDRICK SHOWDOWN? "No. To date in the season I think it’s been that way, but I think we’ve all got our eyes on Matt’s group and all the Gibbs cars and I just don’t see a whole season going by without them having a dominant race car in one section of time. I think we’re all fearful that will happen in the Chase when it counts the most, so certainly I wouldn’t say it’s Hendrick and Penske yet, but let the chips fall where they may."

THOUGHTS ON BRISTOL GRINDING THE BOTTOM? "I just don’t think they should have changed the track at all. I think it was a mistake to do so, but it’s not my decision to make."

NOTHING ON THE BOTTOM? "No. We don’t need to go grinding tracks - handed it to a bunch of engineers and told them to make the bottom lane the fastest land and, low and behold, they screwed it up and made the highest lane the fastest lane. I’m shocked."

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