Up until tonight, Brad Keselowski had not won a race at the 2.5-mile Daytona International Speedway. The driver of the No. 2 Detroit Genuine Parts Ford Fusion changed that by capturing the 58th Annual Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola. Keselowski dominated the race by leading 115 out of 161 laps. The Michigan native has now earned his second restrictor-plate win and his third one overall on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.
Keselowski had to work to hold off both Kurt and Kyle Busch as well as his teammate Joey Logano," Those guys were doing a heck of a job. Kyle and Kurt worked together really well and my teammate Joey Logano was a huge part of this today," Keselowski said after the race in a Ford Performance release." We had two great cars here with Team Penske and worked together really well."
Keselowski praised his teammate for actually helping him win the race. " Joey has won here and he's really a pro, especially on that restart," Keselowski said. " He gave me that push I needed to get to the front and here we are at Daytona in Victory Lane."
For Keselowski, a win at the Florida superspeedway has been a long time coming. "It's been a kick in the you-know-what," he said of not winning here for so long. "We came down here for the '500' and quite honestly we ran like dog crap but my team worked on it. I believe in my team and my team believes in me and we put together a better car, and it really showed up today with a great effort from the whole team."
Team Penske reached the milestone of 100 career victories in NASCAR's top series. "What a great day for the team," owner Roger Penske told NBC after the race. "To think 100 wins - this is a tough group of guys you deal with every weekend. To me, it was a great night. We've had a lot of guys go through here (Team Penske) but they've all been great. If the team wins we all win and that's what we saw today with Joey pushing Brad."
Despite crashing in Friday's practice session, Kyle Busch finished in the runner-up position in a backup car. The driver of the No. 18 M&M's/Interstate Batteries Toyota also finished second at Talladega, also a restrictor plate track. "It was really close to Talladega," Busch said of his second-place finish in the Toyota post-race press release. "At the end of the race, the no. 2 (Keselowski) car was really, really fast. It's hard to get by him. I tried everything. The only thing I didn't quite have was a big enough push one time just to try to make a move."
It was a good night for the Roush-Fenway Racing Fords as Trevor Bayne and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. both finished in the top 10. Bayne earned an impressive third-place finish and credits the guys that were running behind him towards the end of the race. " I owe the guys behind me that were pushing me," Bayne said in the Ford press release. "The race was really crazy today."
The No. 6 AdvoCare Ford driver also had help from his spotter to get the job done. "My spotter has a better perspective than I do," Bayne explained. "He told me to go to the back and ride and we did and got through some wrecks. It was a tough night."
Stenhouse Jr. finished fifth to get two out of three of RFR's top-10 finishes on the night. "It was wild out there," he said. "Clint (Bowyer) was pushing me the whole last lap. I wasn't sure that we would be able to be pushed all the way through the corners but we were able to hold it in a straight line as best we could and get a top-five out of it."
The No. 17 Fifth Third Bank Ford is proud of the organization he drives for. "The guys worked really hard and Jack has put a confidence in everyone to get out cars better each week, Stenhouse Jr. said. "We have really improved on the speedways."
The race lasted two hours and forty minutes and featured a total of five cautions.
With tonight's win, Keselowski has moved into the top spot in the Chase standings with 551 points. Busch is second with a total of 492 points.
Next week, the Sprint Cup Series heads to Kentucky Speedway. Coverage begins next Saturday at 7:00 PM ET on NBC Sports Network, PRN and Sirius XM Channel 90.
Coming off the ranch, I didn’t have a motorsports background but my passion was and still is very strong. My first taste of NASCAR came at the age of seven while waiting for music videos to come on the old TNN network. As I grew up, I pursued other interest but eventually rediscovered cars going left when I found the SPEED channel during the 2011-2012 offseason.
I didn’t decide I wanted to pursue a career in NASCAR until the summer of 2012. I’m not a wrench head or strong enough for a pit crew so media was the next best thing. At the beginning of 2013, I started going to races and making connections within the sport. I also studied Motorsports Management at Sports Management Worldwide. Although I love what happens on the track, I’ve always been interested in what goes on behind the scenes and I’ve gotten to know many people throughout the radio, TV and digital media world.
While I’m a long time writer, 2015 was my first year actually covering the sport with www.nascarfemale.com . I also became a media correspondent for Raceline. I’ve been able to help the TV show gain recognition on social media. My current goal is to acquire more experience in covering NASCAR and move up the media ladder. Outside of motorsports, I have been an equine-sports statistician for 16 years.
I currently reside in Gillette, WY where I’m still involved with horses. I enjoy riding them, rodeo, swimming, traveling and meeting people.