Brad Keselowski secures top honors at Talladega.
It’s hard to believe that it had been 36 years since Dodge last reached Victory Lane at Talladega Superspeedway. That all changed on Sunday, May 6, as Brad Keselowski was victorious for Penske Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at the 2.66-mile track. The win for Keselowski was his second at Talladega, after earning his first-career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win at the track in 2009.
Running second at Talladega on the last lap is often the preferred place to be. But Keselowski was leading in his Dodge Charger when the white flag waved, and in his mind, the native of Rochester Hills, Michigan, knew exactly what he was going to try and do in order to stay out front.
“I had this whole plan if I ever got in that situation,” Keselowski explained. “I knew the move I wanted to pull. The guy running second (Kyle Busch) should have the advantage, but I had this move all worked out in my mind. I went into turn three high and pulled down off of Kyle; that broke the tandem up. That allowed me to get away from him and drive untouched to the checkered flag. It wasn’t easy to convince myself to do that, but it was the right move. I’m glad it worked.”
Car owner Roger Penske has been competing at Talladega for 40 years, and the win marked his organization’s first victory at the track.
“We’ve been coming here since 1972, so it’s a long time to get a race win,” said Penske. “It was certainly special. Overall the car ran well. The Dodge engine showed its power as Brad came off of (turn) four there, which amazed me. You never know what’s going to happen with a green-white-checkered finish at Daytona or Talladega. We were very fortunate and Brad did a terrific job.”
Keselowski, one of just three drivers who has two wins this season in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, is 12th in points, a mere three markers out of the top-10, as he looks for a spot in the Chase later this season.