When it rains does it ever pour. Roger Penske‘s NASCAR race team, Penske Racing has faced controversy and challenge over the past week and it only continued on Sunday in the STP 400 at Kansas Speedway. Last week after NASCAR found that the rear ends of both Penske Sprint Cup Series cars, driven by Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano, were against regulation they brought down some severe penalties on both teams.
The biggest and most important being that both lost 25 points in the Sprint Cup Championship and their pit crew teams were to be suspended for six weeks after Penske’s appeal has gone through. Since Penske’s appeal to the penalties is still pending both Penske teams were able to race with their teams intact for the week.
This was quite lucky for Brad Keselowski reigning champ in the No.2 car who needed his able crew chief Paul Wolfe even more than normal as his faced car issues and then a fight to get back on the lead lap. In fact, a wave-around gamble was critical to getting him to where he needed to be to claw out his top-ten finish. This week’s top ten performance put Keselowski back into the title hunt as many disparaged his attitude and repeat championship hopes.
Now, he is still in third in the points behind the two Hendrick Motorsports drivers Kasey Kahne and leader Jimmie Johnson. He still has plenty of ground to make up as he sits 38 points behind old rival Johnson and only one point behind Kahne. Indeed, if the appeal doesn’t meet success the loss of Paul Wolfe and other team engineers could prove to be a huge stumbling block for Keselowski.
While veteran teammate Keselowski was able to make the best out of a rough race Sunday Joey Logano simply ran out of luck. When former teammate Kyle Busch spun for the second time and hit the wall his car came sliding down the track to smash head on into Logano’s No. 22 Ford Fusion.
Logano was disappointed but nowhere near furious. The young driver is becoming more and more comfortable at Penske Racing. Even with a drop to 20th in the points don’t count this guy out. Week in and week out he has had good cars that have finished much better than expected.