By Davey Segal/ Edited By Jason Schultz
Brad Keselowski crossed the finish line first today at Charlotte Motor Speedway, but there was much more drama into how that ending took place. Keselowski opted to stay out while everyone but Kasey Kahne pitted after the caution came out for an accident between Jason Bowles and Josh Richards.
While mostly everyone took either fuel only, two tires or four tires, Keselowski, who ended up winning, did none of that. Keselowski held off the rest of the field after that with about 50 laps to go and won the race.
The biggest story of the day was what happened to Ricky Stenhouse Jr. About halfway through the race, he came into pit under caution because he felt that something was wrong with the car. After he left pit road, the transmission as shaking violently and then all of a sudden, something broke and came out of the back of the car. It was a part of the transmission.
The championship leader went behind the wall for a number of laps before returning to the action multiple laps down and out of contention. Elliot Sadler finished in fifth place and is now only 13 points behind Stenhouse for the championship lead.
Kevin Harvick dominated most of the race until he was passed on a restart by Kasey Kahne. After that, he went to pit for four tires while most of the other drivers wither took two tires or a splash and go. This put him back in traffic, out of clean air and he never really was the same car again.
On the restart, he looked like he was going to make a run at the lead, but he lost his momentum when he was trying to make a pass and that was pretty much the end of his dominance for the day. As for the other RCR car, Joey Coulter made his NASCAR Nationwide series debut. I think he shocked some people with a solid run in the top-15 all day long and ended bringing his car home in the tenth position. It was a great day for Joey.
Travis Pastrana had a trying day to say the least. On lap 7, he spun out coming out of turn four. Later in the race, he spun coming out of turn four again and sounded very frustrated on the radio. He finished multiple laps down and I think that halfway through the race he realized that he just needed to run the rest of the race for seat time and focus on hitting his marks.
Danica Patrick had a solid day starting in the top five. She ended up finishing in the 13th position and had another solid performance to add onto her career year. Keselowski keep his winning ways this season in NASCAR going by his Nationwide Series win today.
A patriotic celebration by Keselowski, which he does after every win, features him driving around the track with an American Flag sticking out the car. The celebration goes along great with Memorial Day Weekend this weekend. Tune into FOX tomorrow night at six eastern for the longest race in the NASCAR schedule, the Coca Cola 600.