Keselowski Rides Hot Streak to Bristol
By: Jeff Wackerlin - @JWackerlin Twitter and Instagram | MRN.com on August 23, 2011 | 2:42 P.M. EST
Keselowski continues to lead the wild card standings. (Photo: Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski rides an impressive streak into Bristol Motor Speedway as he looks to score a spot in this year's Chase for the Sprint Cup.
With the cutoff for the Chase approaching, Keselowski continues to peak at the right time. He's coming off his third consecutive top-three finish with a third-place run at Michigan International Speedway to place him a career-high 12th in the standings.
“Right before the Chase is always the right time to peak, you just hope you can carry that momentum in the Chase," Keselowski said. "I feel pretty good about the next three; we’ll just have to see what we get there. It’s been a good ride the last three weeks.”
The 2.0 average three-race streak, which ties championship leader Kyle Busch in that span, is more impressive considering Keselowski has done it with an injured ankle and back from a testing crash at Road Atlanta.
"Been feeling pretty good," Keselowski said after his Michigan finish. "I'm not going to get back to a hundred percent probably ‘till Daytona of next year. Good progress so far. We'll just take it one step at a time. But, you know, I definitely felt the best I have. As far as during the week, I ran the whole race without a brace. Maybe regret that just a little bit. Making progress, and that's good."
Keselowski currently sits in the top wild card spot for the Chase following his rebound from a disappointing run at New Hampshire Motor Speedway that saw him jump 11 spots in the standings in the four races since.
"After Loudon it was a big step backwards," Keselowski said. "I'd be lying if I didn't say I was nervous after that race. Like I say, we're clicking now. That's all that really matters. Just glad to see it.”
Following the New Hampshire race, Keselowski sat 95 points out of making the top 10 in the standings. Now, thanks to his recent performances, Keselowski is 52 points out of potentially not having to have to rely on his wild card status.
“I would like to make the top 10 on our own merits if for no other reason than to push away all the naysayers of the wild card system, not to have to hear that," Keselowski said. "It's going to be good either way.
"I'm a big fan of the wild card. It's going to be something that's going to reward me. I think it's a great way of showing a commitment to our fans to rewarding those who can win races. It serves the sport well accordingly. I'd be proud either way to be in the Chase. It would mean even more to get in through the top 10 system.”
The last four races have seen Keselowski record his first career top 10 at each of the respective tracks, including a win at Pocono. This weekend, Keselowski will look to pick up his first top 10 at Bristol when he makes his fourth career Sprint Cup start at the half-mile track.