MYAFIBSTORY.com 400 – Chicagoland Speedway (1.5 mile speedway, Joliet, Ill.)
No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion driven by Brad Keselowski | No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion driven by Joey Logano
Saturday, September 14, 2:00 pm ET
· FIRST TO FOUR: After a dominant performance at Richmond last Saturday night, Keselowski became the first and only four-time winner in 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition. The win represented Keselowski’s 14th career victory and it marked the 400th all-time race win for Team Penske.
· TOP SPOT TO START: On the strength of last Saturday’s win and as the only Chase driver with four victories to date this season, Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford team enter this weekend’s start of the 2014 Chase as the top seed.
· RETURNING TO THE SCENE: Keselowski returns to Chicagoland Speedway as a previous winner. He notched a victory at the 1.5-mile oval on the way to winning the 2012 Sprint Cup Series Championship.
· FRONT ROW SEAT: The 2014 NSCS season has been a breakout season for Keselowski and the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford team in terms of their qualifying performance. Through 26 races, Keselowski has earned four Coors Light Pole Awards, which brings his career total to seven poles. He and the No.2 team have also qualified on the front row a series-leading 11 times this season.
· CHASE EXPOSE DAY: Doing his part for the 2014 Chase Across North America, Keselowski will be in Raleigh, NC on Wednesday, September 10 to promote awareness for the Chase. While in Raleigh he will visit various radio stations and take part in a Fan Forum downtown on Fayetteville St. at 12:00 pm ET.
· SEE BRAD AT SCOOTER’S: Keselowski will make an appearance for Miller Lite this Thursday, September 11 at 8:30 pm CT at Skooter’s Roadhouse, 700 West Jefferson Street in Shorewood, IL.
· NO. 5 SEED: As the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Chase begins this weekend, Logano enters the weekend as the number five seed in the Chase for the Championship. Logano, by virtue of his three 2014 regular season victories, will go into the weekend with nine bonus points, just three behind his Team Penske teammate Brad Keselowski, who is the top seed in the playoffs. This marks Logano’s second appearance in the Chase, following his post-season debut in 2013 when he finished eighth in the points.
· RIDING ALONG: In recognition of Manufacturing Day (October 3rd) and to help raise awareness of the third annual event, the Manufacturing Day logo will be placed on the deck lid of the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Fusion during this weekend’s race in Chicago. On October 3, 2014, manufacturers around the nation will open their doors to the public and host events highlighting the importance of manufacturing to people’s everyday lives. Recognizing the importance of the grassroots initiative known as Manufacturing Day, Shell Lubricants stepped up its commitment through a number of initiatives to celebrate the growth of the manufacturing industry and the positive impact that its companies make on the fabric and economy of the United States.
· IT’S LADIES NIGHT: On Monday evening, Logano’s fiancée Brittany Baca, along with Keselowski’s girlfriend Paige White, hosted over 30 wives and girlfriends from the No. 2 and No. 22 Sprint Cup Series teams and the No. 22 Nationwide Series team, for a painting party at Logano’s race shop. The event represented a “thank you” to the significant others for everything they do throughout the year.
· CHASE TO TALLADEGA: As part of the 2014 Chase Across North America, Logano will make an appearance in the Talladega Superspeedway race market on Wednesday afternoon. As part of the event, Logano will interact with kids at the Children’s of Alabama hospital at University of Alabama Birmingham. Logano will wear his bright yellow Shell-Pennzoil firesuit as part of their month-long “Celebrating our Superheroes” program.
Race: MyAFibStory.com 400
Track: Chicagoland Speedway
Race Start Time: 2:00 pm ET
Radio Broadcast: Live on MRN & SIRIUS XM NASCAR Channel 90
1:00 pm ET, Practice (FS1)
6:30 pm ET, Qualifying (ESPN2)
11:00 am ET, Practice (FS1)
2:00 pm ET, Final Practice (FS2)
2:00 pm ET, MYAFIBSTORY.com 400 (ESPN)
BRAD KESELOWSKI, NO. 2 MILLER LITE FORD
HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE THE TOP SEED HEADING INTO THE FIRST RACE OF THE CHASE AT CHICAGOLAND THIS WEEKEND?
“We won the Chicago race in 2012, and I’d like to do that again. We are riding some good momentum in the Miller Lite Ford coming out of Richmond, so we look to carry that forward into the first race of the Chase this weekend. Chicagoland is somewhat similar to Kentucky, which was a great race for us earlier this year, and I think that bodes well for our chances this weekend. This team is fired up, and we look to continue building on what we’ve done to get to this point of the season.”
PAUL WOLFE, CREW CHIEF, NO. 2 MILLER LITE FORD
TRADITIONALLY, TEAM PENSKE HAS A STRONG INTERMEDIATE TRACK PROGRAM, WHAT IS YOUR OUTLOOK FOR CHICAGO?
“We do have a pretty decent platform for the intermediate tracks. We won here at Chicago a couple years ago and then we won at Kentucky earlier this year. On top of that, the No. 22 team did a tire test at Texas earlier this year, which gives us a little bit more data to reference. We are also bringing our most current package to the track this weekend. Looking at all that together, along with our recent results – I’d say I feel pretty good going into this weekend. Our team has been executing at a high level; our cars have had speed and Brad has been on point too. We ought to be pretty good this weekend.”
JOEY LOGANO, NO. 22 SHELL-PENNZOIL FORD
YOU HAVE SAID THAT THIS WILL BE 10 WEEKS OF VERY IMPORTANT RACES. HOW DO YOU FEEL GOING INTO THE CHASE?
“You have to go into these next 10 races and bring you’re A game the entire time. You can’t have a letdown. This is a different Chase this year, but our Chicago race last year proved that you can’t afford to have a bad race. We won the pole and were running third last year in the first race of the Chase and blew an engine and that put us behind for the next nine races. You can’t afford to dig yourself out of a hole. Ten races sounds like a lot of time and a lot of chances, but it’s not. These next 10 weeks will go really fast.”
TEAM PENSKE HAS BEEN STRONG ON THE 1.5-MILE TRACKS SO FAR THIS YEAR. DO YOU THINK YOUR TEAMMATE WILL BE YOUR TOUGHEST COMPETITION?
“Brad will be tough to beat, because the No. 2 team is running really strong right now. And if they have a strong weekend, they are good all weekend long. But I think our Shell-Pennzoil team is equally as strong and I think that is because we work so well together. Our plan is to get both of these Ford Fusions in the final four at Homestead at the end of the year. And that all begins this weekend at Chicago. But there are a lot of tough guys out there. The Hendrick cars are always going to be strong. The Roush cars have been getting better. You really can’t overlook anyone in the Chase. They are here and in the Chase for a reason.”