SRT Motorsports – Sprint Cup Brad Keselowski Open Interview – New Hampshire 2

Friday, September 21, 2012

Dodge PR

New Hampshire Motor Speedway

American Muscle

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

Sylvania 300

Brad Keselowski Open Interview

Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger R/T) TALK ABOUT THE MOMENTUM ENTERING THIS RACE AND HOW YOU THINK THAT WILL PLAY OUT FOR YOU. “It’s great. I feel like I can come here and finish dead last and only be like 30-something points behind. I’m trying to be optimistic about it but that pessimist always comes out. You know, it’s another new opportunity in the Chase to go out there and put together a solid run and show that you know we’re a team capable of getting the job done and I believe that. Just looking forward to getting started here and get through a few more of these races.”

YOU JUST SAID YOU COULD FINISH LAST HERE AND ONLY BE 30 POINTS DOWN. REALISTICALLY, CAN YOU AFFORD A MULLIGAN IN THIS? HAS IT GOTTEN SO TIGHT THAT YOU HAVE TO BE FLAWLESS? “I think there’s a lot of parity right now in Sprint Cup racing and there’s some teams that are really good. I don’t know how to exactly answer that question. I think you can’t have a bad finish and win the championship. I think you can have a bad finish and finish in the top two or three. We’ll see. Every Chase seems to have its own way and its own process of winning it. I think it’s important to not over-think it and just do it.”

HOW HAVE YOUR PERFORMANCE AND YOUR RESULTS COMPARED TO YOUR EXPECTATIONS IN THE SPRINT CUP SERIES? “You know, I think we always set high expectations. I know I do, out of myself and my team does, which is what I like about them, because they set them on themselves. I think that’s the best way to put it and you have to balance that with the pressures that may be. I’m thrilled to be where we’re at right now, just not in the standings but in general, just the vibe and the motions that you see in the people you’re surrounded with. I’m just really proud of everybody I’m around and really thankful for the opportunities that I have and the people I’m surrounded with. I think we’re a pretty happy group right now.”

YOU AND DENNY HAMLIN HAVE BEEN CANDID ABOUT THE FACT THAT DOVER IS NOT ONE OF YOUR STRONGEST TRACKS WHILE FOR THE 48 (JIMMIE JOHNSON), THAT MIGHT BE HIS STRONGEST TRACK PERIOD. CAN YOU PSYCHE YOURSELF OUT AT ALL? “Well, I think the way the last few races have played out, really the last few months, it’s taught me a valuable lesson, to maybe look even less at practice and previous results than ever before. I think with the rule changes and so forth that have been implemented, things have changed and it’s really hard to get a read on ‘em. I was talking with someone in the truck when Jimmie Johnson went out to qualified, that I thought he was the guy to beat qualifying-wise. He qualified behind me and I qualified not very well so that really caught me off guard. Then again, last week at Chicago, I thought the 48 car was terrible and the 11 car (Denny Hamlin) was the car to beat based off of practice and it didn’t work out that way. I think it’s really easy to allow yourself to get psyched-out by looking at previous stats or even practice and qualifying stats and it doesn’t seem to be the case. It’s really hard to give a great answer on who’s going to be good where. Our previous history has shown that we have not run well at Dover but I’m optimistic that can change.”

THE LAST TIME YOU WERE IN HERE (MEDIA CENTER AT NEW HAMPSHIRE) WAS THE WEEK AFTER A.J. ALLMENDINGER HAD BEEN SUSPENDED. NOW A FEW DAYS AFTER HE HAS BEEN REINSTATED, DO YOU STILL FEEL THE SAME WAY YOU FELT EIGHT WEEKS AGO? DO YOU THINK THE WAY THINGS HAVE PLAYED OUT WORKED IN HIS FAVOR? “Yeah, I mean it’s still a tough road. It’s great to see Roger (Penske) support him like he has been and really the whole NASCAR community has reached out in their own ways. I’m happy that the Road to Recovery process has worked for him and I think we’ll all be watching to see what happens.”

THE NEWS CYCYLE NOW IS INSTANTANIOUS; HOW DO YOU GUYS RESET AND REFOCUS TO COME HERE? “You know, when I was at Hendrick there was this guy who still works there by the name of Ken Howes. I remember when Jimmie was on his streak and I was there at the time, he said something that I thought was really, really profound and really smart and that is never believe your own press clippings good or bad. And you know, I think the key is to know that the truth probably lies somewhere in between. You’re probably not as good as people say you are some days and you’re probably not as bad as people say you are on some days. And you have to balance those things and how you feel about it. Certainly, confidence is important but you know you have to be realistic and never lose sight of how tough this sport is and how everybody else is really good too.”

DO YOU HAVE ENOUGH EXPERIENCE TO HAVE A GOOD HANDLE ON HOW TO RUN HERE? “I mean, yeah, by today’s standards you could say I have limited experience because there’s really not that many young drivers or drivers that have less experience than me in the series. But I feel that I have the appropriate amount of experience to be successful. I feel like we’ve showcased that over the last two weekends here where we finished fifth and second and we won the Nationwide race the last time here. So, feel like we have a pretty good track record and as good a shot as anyone else.”

WHAT DRIVES YOU TO BE SO RELENTLESS IN YOUR QUEST TO WIN? “Am I relentless? When you want something, you go out there and get it, you get the job done. I’ve just always believed if something’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well. I’ve never been afraid to put the effort in and I’ve had great teachers in my life to showcase what that effort means, whether it’s my dad or guys like Paul Wolfe or guys on the team. I know there’s a group of people around me right now at Penske Racing that work their butts off and make sacrifices to their own lives for me to be successful. It sure would be a shame to not give the same.”

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