Fords are lacking in the aero department says Brad Keselowski

Rey Del Rio/Getty Images
0 Comments

Team Penske might have been victorious in the two races NASCAR ran with the potential 2017 rules package, but Brad Keselowski says Ford is behind when it comes to the current aero setup.

NASCAR took six cars, two from each manufacturer, after the Pennsylvania 400 at Pocono Raceway on Aug. 1 for a midseason evaluation that included a trip to the wind tunnel. The results, according to Keselowski, who admitted he did not see the numbers firsthand, revealed that the Fords are at a disadvantage.

“I could read the faces of the people that did see the numbers, and I know the meetings that happened right after and I would say based on that there were some reactions to say we were a little further behind than we wanted to be,” Keselowski said Friday morning at Michigan International Speedway.

Keselowski’s teammate, Joey Logano, is the most recent winner at Michigan (June 12), which was the first race NASCAR used the reduced downforce package. Keselowski followed it up with a July 9 victory at Kentucky Speedway, which also featured the smaller spoiler (2.5 inches), a splitter reduction of two inches and the re-sizing of the rear deck lid.

“From an aero perspective right now the Fords are the worst,” Keselowski said. “So when you go to a lower downforce, we aren’t at quite a disadvantage. Since we are running well we have other advantages on the car, but from an aero perspective we are the worst in that category, but the lower downforce fits us well.”

Penske has a total of five wins this season, four of which have come courtesy of Keselowski. In addition to his Kentucky win, the No. 2 has earned victories at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March, Talladega Superspeedway in May and Daytona International Speedway in July.

On the strength of his four wins, Keselowski would be the current top seed in the Chase. However, he and Logano are the only Ford drivers sitting in the top 10 in points. Chris Buescher, via a strategy play to win the rain-shortened Pennsylvania 400, could make it three Ford drivers in the Chase as he sits inside the top 30 points.

As for any additional changes that Keselowski would like to see NASCAR make to the rules package, he noted it hurts the sport when there are continual changes. It also seems to punish Team Penske, Keselowski said, as a rule change occurs when they are on the upswing.

“I wish we would stop changing things for balance of performance,” Keselowski said. “I think that is a bad thing. I think balance of performance is something that hurts our sport when we continue to make changes and concessions. As long as when we are on the good side of that it stays the same.

“It seems every time we get on top there is a wind tunnel test or some kind of rule changed to try to pull us down but when we are behind it is like, ‘oh now, let’s keep it fair and equal and everyone with the same opportunity.’ As long as it is consistent either way I am good with that.”

Follow @KellyCrandall

More rain postpones conclusion of Charlotte Xfinity race

0 Comments

CONCORD, N.C. — Despite an improving forecast, rain continued to plague NASCAR and its drivers Monday at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

The twice-rescheduled Xfinity Series race was stopped twice because of weather Monday after finally getting the green flag, and the conclusion of the 300-mile race was postponed until after the completion of Monday’s rescheduled 600-mile Cup Series race.

Forty-eight of the race’s scheduled 200 laps were completed before weather and the impending scheduled start of the Cup race intervened.

When (or if) the race resumes Monday night, it will be broadcast by FS2, the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.

After 48 laps, Ty Gibbs, John Hunter Nemechek and Justin Allgaier are in the top three positions.

Gibbs won the first stage.

Monday Charlotte Cup race: Start time, TV info, weather

0 Comments

After two days of soaking rains, the longest race on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule is set for a 3 p.m. ET start Monday at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

The 600-mile marathon was scheduled for a 6:21 p.m. start Sunday, but persistent rain forced a postponement to Memorial Day.

A look at the Monday Cup schedule:

Details for Monday’s Cup race at Charlotte Motor Speedway

(All times Eastern)

START: The command to start engines will be given at 3:12 p.m. by USO official Barry Morris and retired drivers Jeff Burton, Dale Jarrett and Bobby Labonte. … The green flag is scheduled to be waved at 3:23 p.m.

PRERACE: Driver introductions are scheduled at 2:30 p.m. … The invocation will be given by retired Air Force Master Sergeant Monty Self at 3 p.m. … The national anthem will be performed by U.S. Marine Corps Lance Corporal Elizabeth Marino at 3:04 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 400 laps (600 miles) on the 1.5-mile track.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends at Lap 100. Stage 2 ends at Lap 200. Stage 3 ends at Lap 300.

STARTING LINEUP: Charlotte Cup starting lineup

TV/RADIO: Fox will broadcast the race at 3 p.m. … Performance Racing Network coverage begins at 3 p.m. and can be heard on goprn.com. … SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the PRN broadcast.

STREAMING: Foxsports.com

FORECAST: Weather Underground — The forecast calls for overcast skies with a high of 71. There is a 15% chance of rain at the start of the race.

LAST TIME: Denny Hamlin won last year’s 600 as the race was extended to two overtimes, making it the longest race in distance in Cup history.

Monday Charlotte Xfinity race: Start time, TV info, weather

0 Comments

Charlotte Motor Speedway’s rescheduled NASCAR Xfinity Series race is set for an 11 a.m. start Monday.

The race originally was scheduled Saturday, but was postponed by weather to noon Monday. After Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 Cup Series race also was postponed to Monday, the Xfinity Series race was moved to an 11 a.m. start.

A look at the Monday Xfinity schedule:

Details for Monday’s Xfinity race at Charlotte Motor Speedway

(All times Eastern)

START: The command to start engines will be given at 11:01 a.m. by representatives of race sponsor Alsco Uniforms … The green flag is scheduled to be waved at 11:12 a.m.

PRERACE: Xfinity garage opened at 8 a.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 200 laps (300 miles) on the 1.5-mile track.

STAGES: Stage 1 ends at Lap 45. Stage 2 ends at Lap 90.

STARTING LINEUP: Charlotte Xfinity starting lineup (Justin Haley will replace Kyle Busch in the No. 10 Kaulig Racing car).

TV/RADIO: FS1 will broadcast the race at 11 a.m. … Performance Racing Network coverage begins at 11 a.m. and can be heard on goprn.com. … SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the PRN broadcast.

STREAMING: Foxsports.com

FORECAST: Weather Underground — The forecast calls for overcast skies with a high of 71. There is a 15% chance of rain at the start of the race.

LAST TIME: Josh Berry won last May’s Xfinity race. Ty Gibbs was second and Sam Mayer third.

Justin Haley replaces Kyle Busch in Kaulig car for Xfinity race

0 Comments

Justin Haley will drive Kaulig Racing’s No. 10 car in Monday morning’s scheduled NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Haley replaces Cup Series regular Kyle Busch, who was scheduled to drive for Kaulig in the 300-miler. The race was postponed from Saturday to Monday because of weather, giving NASCAR a 900-mile doubleheader at the track.

Busch decided to concentrate on the Coca-Cola 600 Cup race, scheduled for a  3 p.m. start.

Haley also will race in the 600.

Ty Gibbs is scheduled to run in both races.