The reason: to avoid NASCAR forcing manufacturers and teams to change aero rules to assure parity in the Cup playoffs.
Keselowski fired the first salvo Friday when he made his accusations.
“About this time every year NASCAR takes all the cars to kind of check to make sure that the competitive balance is where they want it to be, and I think we’ve seen the last two or three weeks that the Toyota cars are pretty dominant,” Keselowski said after winning the pole for Sunday’s race.
“We had a strong suspicion that those guys (Toyota) would kind of tune it down this weekend, so not to post a pretty big number in inspection that maybe balanced back out the competition,” Keselowski added. “And potentially that’s right because our team hasn’t done much differently and those guys are just not as fast as they’ve been the last few weeks.”
Busch countered, telling ESPN, “Brad’s a [expletive] moron. We don’t just turn it down. We actually have a new engine package here this week. He’s a moron.”
Toyotas have led 88.2 percent of laps in the last five Cup races. And in Friday’s qualifying, four Toyotas were in the top 10. Matt Kenseth was fourth, the highest-ranked Toyota driver and Busch sixth. Ford drivers captured the first three qualifying spots: Keselowski, Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick.
In Saturday’s final practice, Ford drivers had three of the five fastest speeds: Keselowski (first), teammate Joey Logano (third) and Ryan Blaney (fourth), while Toyota drivers Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch were second and fifth, respectively.
Responding in kind with his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, Denny Hamlin tweeted about Keselowski, “#Fakenews by someone trying to control the rhetoric.”