Hampton, GA- It was looking like defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Brad Keselowski was set to finally win a race in the 2013 season Sunday night at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Keselowski, who’s been winless this season and struggling for most of the year after having a great start where he finished in the top eight in the first eight races, needed to get a win to make his Chase hopes come alive.
With less than 100 laps to go Sunday night at Atlanta Keselowski found himself in the lead with his Penske Racing teammate Joey Logano following behind. He was well on his way to finally land in victory lane and move into a good situation to defend his title.
Keselowski entered the race 11th in the standings just four points outside the top 10. If the race ended while they were running in that order while Keselowski was leading he’d be in the top 10 and have a win under his belt.
Instead, with 81 laps to go his Ford developed terminal issues.
Keselowski’s No. 2 Miller Lite Ford slowed exiting Turn 2 on Lap 244 as he dropped two cylinders while leading. His teammate passed easily as “Bad Brad” dropped down the scoring column quickly.
His engine finally expired on Lap 311 and he finished a disappointing 35th Sunday night and now finds himself in a win or not make the Chase situation in next weeks regular season finale at Richmond International Raceway.
It’s definitely not where Keselowski wants to be, and it’s a position that no one would have predicted for the reigning Sprint Cup champion at the beginning of the season.
Eric Smith is the Lead Motorsports Writer for Race Review Online. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru
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