Bristol: Keselowski Wins At Bristol- Continues Impressive Streak

August 27, 2011 No Comments

Photo Credit: Getty Images for NASCAR

If I were to have told you that Brad Keselowski would break his ankle just one month ago, would you have believed me if I would have told you he would have four straight top-three finishes (2 of which were wins)?

Saturday’s running of the Irwin Tools Night Race was merely dominated by two drivers, who weren’t really in contention for the win within the closing laps. Jeff Gordon had not led a single lap going into this race on Bristol’s “new” surface, but that would change as he would lead an astonishing 206 total laps.

Gordon had his shot at a win, if only he could have won the battle off pit road and could have challenged P2 finisher Martin Truex Jr. in hopes of catching soon to be race winner Keselowski.

Truex’s team had made a “gutsy” call to take two tires versus the four to win the track position, knowing that drivers like Gordon would be right behind them on the restart.

“I wasn’t too worried about the drivers on two tires, however I was really surprised we weren’t able to get my Martin (Truex) as he was strong on the top” Gordon said.

At the end of the race, Gordon seemed more concerned over the pit road controversy, than the actual ending of the race. “I tell you, the pit road story is kind of interesting, I think they (NASCAR) will have to look at that. Qualifying has become such a premium and we qualified pretty well to pick our stall, but if you look how the 2 and the 17 were able to ‘shoot’ out there, it kind of defeats the purpose of a pit road speed.”

Gordon later defended, “but that’s not what cost us the win, we just didn’t get it done on the race track.”

Needless to say, Gordon didn’t steal the spotlight away at Bristol, Keselowski did.

As mentioned earlier, just four weeks ago Keselowski was injured in a ‘testing’ session at Road Atlanta for preparation for the Watkins Glen race that was to follow two weeks after. Just days after his accident, Keselowski went on to win at Pocono, finished P2 at Watkins Glen, finished P3 at Michigan and as we later know, went on to win at Bristol- Pretty remarkable!

A very excited Keselowski hopped out of his No. 2 Miller Lite car and described this race as, “this is the race of champions, I can’t believe it!”

When asked what this win meant, he smiled “there’s races that pay more and there’s races that might have a little more prestige, but this is the coolest damn one of them.”

It’s a remarkable story that took place at a remarkable track, Bristol. Sure this wasn’t the race that many had in mind, hardly any beating and banging, with just a handful of cautions, but this was Bristol!

Truex finished second, while Gordon finished third, Johnson fourth and McMurray rounded out the top-five.

Unofficial Race Results:

1 – 2 Brad Keselowski
2 – 56 Martin Truex Jr.
3 – 24 Jeff Gordon
4 – 48 Jimmie Johnson
5 – 1 Jamie McMurray
6 – 17 Matt Kenseth
7 – 11 Denny Hamlin
8 – 39 Ryan Newman
9 – 99 Carl Edwards
10 – 9 Marcos Ambrose
11 – 4 Kasey Kahne
12 – 43 A.J. Allmendinger
13 – 20 Joey Logano
14 – 18 Kyle Busch
15 – 31 Jeff Burton
16 – 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
17 – 22 Kurt Busch
18 – 78 Regan Smith
19 – 42 Juan Montoya
20 – 6 David Ragan
21 – 83 Brian Vickers
22 – 29 Kevin Harvick
23 – 13 Casey Mears
24 – 34 David Gilliland
25 – 71 Andy Lally
26 – 33 Clint Bowyer
27 – 195 David Starr
28 – 14 Tony Stewart
29 – 51 Mike Bliss
30 – 27 Paul Menard
31 – 16 Greg Biffle
32 – 30 David Stremme
33 – 32 Terry Labonte
34 – 47 Bobby Labonte
35 – 36 Dave Blaney
36 – 00 David Reutimann
37 – 38 Travis Kvapil
38 – 5 Mark Martin
39 – 66 Michael McDowell
40 – 87 Joe Nemechek
41 – 60 Mike Skinner
42 – 46 Scott Speed
43 – 7 Robby Gordon

Next Up: Atlanta Motor Speedway 

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