MARTINSVILLE, VA — Brad Keselowski crossed the finish line fourth in Sunday’s Xfinity 500. It was shaping up to be his best result of the season. That came a week after being fifth in last Sunday’s Dixie Vodka 400 in Miami. However, his No. 6 Ford failed post-race inspection Sunday night at Martinsville (VA) Speedway, and the veteran driver was dropped to a last place finish in the 500-lap NASCAR Cup Series Round of 8 elimination race.
According to NASCAR, they found that Keselowski’s car failed to meet minimum weight requirements as outlined in section 14.11.2 of the rule book.
“We were solid all day,” Keselowski said of his finish before knowing he was a DQ. “We had the spin there early and recovered from that.”
Keselowski started 6th and was 6th and 7th respectively in the two stages. Then at the end, we saw a caution on Lap 466 for Landon Cassill’s crash in Turn 3. Keselowski was one of 15 lead lap cars to pit for the final time on Lap 469. They made the pit call to take two tires and restart in the second row.
“We had a good call at the end by Matt McCall to take two tires, but we just weren’t quite strong enough,” Keselowski continued. “We kept locking up the left-front and had a good shot at it.”
Keselowski made a move for the lead on Chase Briscoe with seven laps-to-go, but Briscoe’s car on old tires (he didn’t pit and stayed out) just stalled Keselowski’s momentum while doing so which as a result, let Christopher Bell and Ryan Blaney by.
“I was gonna cross over (Chase Briscoe), and he parked it and then everybody ran over me from behind and just never got another shot at it, so that was unfortunate, but, overall, it was a really good race for our team and another day of solid progress. We were that fifth to tenth place car and just needed a little bit more speed out of it to make something happen. We had some ups-and-downs for sure and at the end we rebounded with a nice top five. I’m proud of our recovery and our effort. We had a good day on pit road and a good call there at the end to take two tires, but just needed a little bit more speed out of our car to make that count.”