BRAD KESELOWSKI CAPTURES THE CHECKERED FLAG IN THE DC SOLAR 200 AT ISM RACEWAY

Brad Keselowski DC Solar 200 Victory Lane 800x400
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Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 22 car for Team Penske, overcame a stage two pit road speeding penalty and multiple weather delays to outlast the field in the DC Solar 200 NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) race at ISM Raceway. With Keselowski’s victory, Roger Penske, owner of Team Penske, became the winningest team owner in ISM Raceway history with 15 including six in NASCAR.

“Brian Wilson (crew chief) made some great adjustments to the car and the weather kind of came to us with what we needed for how our car was handling,” said Keselowski. “It is good to see that work out for everyone at Team Penske with the Fitzgerald Glider Ford Mustang. It was a solid team effort. I wasn’t perfect today by any stretch of the imagination but the car was really strong. Really, really good for about 50-60 laps. The last 20 laps it would fall off pretty good but the guys made it count. I am really proud of them.”

Keselowski had to endure two red flags for rain during the race. The first came on lap 47 at the end of Stage 1 and lasted for one hour and 34 minutes, and the second was at the end of Stage 2 for 25 minutes. In his second career NXS win at ISM Raceway, the Rochester Hills, Mich., native led 66 of 200 laps, including the final 22.

“We wanted to make sure that the last lap was a quick one, so we didn’t want to put a wrench in the back window,” crew chief Brian Wilson said. “Listening to Brad’s feedback, he felt like on the green flag stop we didn’t need anything large. We only did air pressure and a little bit of fuel weight. Fortunately, the Fitzgerald Ford was able to pull away there and I think the balance was fairly decent at the end.”

Justin Allgaier, the 2017 DC Solar 200 winner, earned the pole Saturday afternoon, and led a race-high 76 laps. The pit road strategy, due to four cautions and two red flags, led to 10 lead changes throughout the race. Allgaier finished second, and is now third in the NXS points standings through four races.

Elliott Sadler had a hard-fought ninth place finish after starting the race from the back due to an engine change. With his top 10 finish, Sadler now leads the NXS points standings, one point ahead of teammate Tyler Reddick, who hit the wall during Saturday’s qualifying and had to go to a backup car.

Only one other driver led more than eight laps, and that was Kyle Busch, who finished third. Busch took the lead shortly after the beginning of Stage 2 and stayed there for 38 laps. He finished one spot ahead of his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, rookie Christopher Bell, who also led five laps. Rounding out the top five was Jamie McMurray, driver of the No. 42 car for Chip Ganassi Racing.

The TicketGuardian 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race will begin on Sunday at 12:30 p.m., local time. Tickets for the TicketGuardian 500 at ISM Raceway are available and can be purchased online at ismraceway.com, by phone at 1-866-408-RACE (7223) or in person at the ISM Raceway ticket office.

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