Penske Enters Weekend As The Team To Beat

Penske Power

Joey Logano (left) and Brad Keselowski (right) took home two wins for Penske at RIR in 2014.

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There was a lot working against Team Penske at Richmond International Raceway when the haulers arrived for the 2014 TOYOTA OWNERS 400.

Penske hadn’t won at RIR since 2003, neither Joey Logano nor Brad Keselowski had ever won in Virginia’s capital, and Ford had just recently broken a streak of Chevrolet and Toyota dominance.

But, all that changed last season after Penske swept both races at RIR and now stands as the team to beat coming into the 2015 TOYOTA OWNERS 400.

In the spring of 2014, Keselowski started on the outside of the front row and was there at the end as part of an exciting three-wide battle for the lead with Matt Kenseth and Jeff Gordon, starting with seven laps to go. Logano was lurking behind and made it a foursome coming across the start-finish line with five laps to go, passing Gordon, Keselowski and Kenseth and cruising to his first win at Richmond.

“You know anytime you’re down to the end of the race, there really is no patience,” Logano said last April after the win. “Obviously, I was able to see that in front of me and wanted to make sure I was close enough when something happened I was able to take advantage of it, and that’s what I was able to do.”

The fortune turned to Logano’s Penske teammate in September’s Federated Auto Parts 400 when Keselowski won the pole and dominated the race, leading 383 of the 400 laps and clinched the top seed in the 2014 Chase for the Sprint Cup.

“It was a phenomenal night for our team here and everyone at Team Penske,” Keselowski said that night. “Car was fast. Pit crew was flawless. We put all the pieces together tonight.”

Team Penske won 11 races in 2014 and its strength has continued in 2015, with both Logano and Keselowski locked into the Chase.

The teammates come to Richmond in second (Logano) and fifth (Keselowski) in points, with both drivers hungry for another win at RIR.


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