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Nascar Sports

Brad Keselowski Clips the Competition at Martinsville

Brad Keselowski

Keselowski Outlasts Elliott

Brad Keselowski was clearly the dominant car on Sunday leading 446 of 500 laps around the historic “paper clip” that is Martinsville Speedway. Keselowski took no time to gain the lead from Penske teammate Joey Logano and never looked back. The #2 Reese/Drawtite Ford Mustang seemed to be able to toy with any competitor, going as quickly as it needed too, to stay out front. The other driver that led a majority of the 54 laps that Keselowski did not lead was Chase Elliott in the #9 Napa Chevrolet. But when it came to the closing laps Elliott put it best in a post-race tweet saying we just got out short tracked. This win is Brad Keselowski’s second win of 2019. It was an impressive performance out of the driver of the #2 and certainly the most dominating win, in terms of laps led that has happened in the first six races of the year.

The Top 10

The top 10 drivers had no surprises with Ford (6), Toyota (3), Chevy (1)

Brad Keselowski celebrating at Martinsville after victory. Image provided by Motorsport.com
  1. Brad Keselowski
  2. Chase Elliott
  3. Kyle Busch
  4. Ryan Blaney
  5. Denny Hamlin
  6. Kevin Harvick
  7. Clint Bowyer
  8. Martin Truex Jr.
  9. Aric Almirola
  10. Daniel Suarez

Notables

In the STP 500, there were a few accidents that brought out cautions. A few basic short track brake failures collected #34 Micheal McDowell and Matt Tifft. The most quizzical caution came on lap 147 when Ross Chastain’s rear axel shot out of his car in turn 4. I have never seen that happen so it was definitely different to see that occur. His rear hub then poured oil throughout the turn causing the caution, but not before a few cars almost got into the wall including some of the top 10 running cars.

Nine-time Martinsville winner Jimmie Johnson struggled mightily on Sunday surprising a lot of people including me. He started the race 11th and never really was competitive in the race finishing 24th. All the Chevy teams struggled in the race except Chase Elliott who finished second.

Takeaways

My takeaways from the STP 500 at Martinsville are simple. How can Chevy teams get better? The last two years Chevrolet has struggled heavily against its competitors Ford and Toyota. Somehow these problems are not getting better after all this time. The only light spot in the dark, dark tunnel for Chevy teams is Chase Elliott. Chase Elliott has won three races in the two years that the Camaro has been out, and ran up front consistently, with some exceptions. But if you’re the esteemed manufacturer that Chevy is, do you share Chase Elliott’s information with other teams or not? Does the #9 team give up some of their information for the good of the manufacturer? What is the right answer here? Post in the comments below what you think. I’m eager to see any suggestions.

 

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