AVONDALE, Ariz. – Brad Keselowski brought his partnership with Roger Penske and Team Penske to a close with a 10th-place finish in Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series championship race at Phoenix Raceway.
“We definitely gave it our all and I’m proud of that,” Keselowski said. “We left it all out on the racetrack today and I’m sure it’ll probably sink in a little more every day afterwards.”
Keselowski celebrated on pit road with his team and other members of Team Penske, including his former crew chief Paul Wolfe and teammates Ryan Blaney and Joey Logano.
All together, they drank Miller Lites and Keselowski excitedly brandished his Miller Lite glass from his 2012 NASCAR Cup Series championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
The end of an era became clearer with every photo taken after the race – including a large team photo featuring Wolfe, Blaney, Logano, crew chief Jeremy Bullins, Team Penske president Tim Cindric and others.
In a phone call before the championship weekend, Keselowski and Penske discussed how the era made the whole team stronger.
“Everybody was proud of each other,” Keselowski said. “Roger Penske has a saying that ‘Good goals make 1 + 1 = 3’ and him and I and his son said that we came together and made it 5.”
In his 12 full-time NASCAR seasons with Team Penske, Brad Keselowski earned 35 NASCAR Cup Series wins, 137 Top-5 finishes and 223 Top-10 finishes in 445 starts. Keselowski’s 35 wins placed him as the second-winningest NASCAR Cup Series driver for the team, behind only Rusty Wallace (44 wins).
Keselowski also accomplished something Wallace could not do – he earned Penske’s first two NASCAR championships: The 2010 NASCAR Xfinity Series championship and the 2012 NASCAR Cup Series championship.
As Keselowski leaves for Roush-Fenway Racing, in 2022, his fingerprints are all over Team Penske’s lineup.
Austin Cindric will take over for the No. 2, joining Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney on the team.
Cindric and Blaney each raced a Brad Keselowski Racing entry in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Keselowski also recommended Logano to Roger Penske, who hired him in 2013 for the No. 22 Ford.
Logano will step up in 2022 as the longest-tenured driver for Team Penske. He leads Blaney and Cindric, who will partake in their fifth and first seasons with the team respectively.