The No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger team will race chassis PRS-822 during Saturday’s Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway. Keselowski last drove this chassis to an 11th-place finish at Kansas Speedway in April.
No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger in 2012… After 16 points-paying events, Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger team are ranked 10th in the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) driver and owner point rankings. The team is coming off a 12th-place finish in the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma last Sunday.
Statistically Speaking… Keselowski ranked inside the top three in several key statistical categories in the inaugural NSCS race at Kentucky Speedway in 2011, including Fastest Lap Run (second), Average Running Position (third) and Driver Rating (third). Keselowski finished seventh in last season’s race.
#PenskePride…Penske Racing is asking fans to show their Penske Pride through a unique social media contest that will last for the balance of the 2012 season. Through the #PenskePride contest, each race weekend fans will Tweet @PenskeRacing pictures showing their support for the Penske Racing organization, their favorite Penske Racing driver(s) or teams in unique and creative ways, using the hashtag #PenskePride. The best weekly photo will be named Fan Photo of the Week. At the end of each month, a Fan Photo of the Month will be selected from the weekly winners. The best monthly photos will be voted on by @PenskeRacing followers to be named Fan Photo of the Year. The winner of Photo of the Year will receive the Ultimate Penske Racing Fan Experience including tickets and hot passes to the 2013 NASCAR All-Star Race, autographed items and a tour of the Penske Racing facility by a Penske driver.
Lite Up The 4th… The featured tag line on the rear bumper of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge this weekend in Kentucky will be “Lite Up The 4th.” This is to celebrate the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, a time for friends to get together to honor our country’s birthday, the Miller Lite way.
Truckin’… This will be a busy weekend for the 28-year-old Keselowski. In addition to his driving duties behind the wheel of the No. 2 Miller Lite machine as well as the No. 22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, Keselowski will make the fourth of six scheduled NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts for the No. 19 Ram from Brad Keselowski Racing in 2012.
The Rest is History…In addition to the lone NSCS race, Team Penske has made 20 combined IZOD IndyCar Series starts at the 1.5-mile Kentucky Speedway oval, as Sam Hornish Jr., won for the team in 2006, Ryan Briscoe took the checkered flag in 2009 and Helio Castroneves scored a victory there in September of 2010. In addition, Ryan Newman started from the pole and won the 2000 ARCA Series event at the venue for Penske Racing.
Brad Keselowski on returning to Kentucky Speedway for the second race “All in all, I thought the inaugural Cup race at Kentucky was competitive. We led some laps and had a shot there at the end, but the bottom groove was not the place to be on restarts and it seemed like we were stuck there every time. Hopefully the law of averages will even that out for us this weekend. We saw last year that being out front was a really big deal, as it is every week, so we will concentrate on qualifying toward the front of the field. Last year we were at the mercy of Mother Nature in qualifying, but ended up starting sixth thanks to our practice speed. When you add all of that up, it shows that you really can’t slack off in any one department this weekend because everything could factor in to winning the race.”
Brad Keselowski on getting around Kentucky Speedway “If you can get your car where it’s comfortable over the bumps in Turns 1 and 2, that’s obviously going to be the fast way around Kentucky. Sometimes that is easier said than done so some drivers will choose to enter a bit higher to avoid the bumps. Usually that will establish a second groove around the middle of the race, which can lead to some great side-by-side racing over the final laps. It’s definitely a place with a lot of character, despite the fact that it looks like a lot of the other intermediate tracks that we visit.”
Crew chief Paul Wolfe on Kentucky: “Ride quality is probably the most important thing to worry about at Kentucky. The bumps in Turns 1 and 2 can really upset the car. I feel like that was one of our better areas during the race last year and a place where we were really able to make up some time on the rest of the field. For the second year in a row we are taking the same car that we raced at Kansas earlier in the season. The two tracks seem to be very comparable. Brad was in position to challenge for the win in the first race at Kentucky last year. We didn’t get any breaks by having to continuously restart on the inside line and ended up seventh. But we feel confident that we’ve made our cars even better since then and can go back and win the second race at Kentucky Speedway.”