The two NASCAR champions put on a show during the final green flag run at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Keselowski had the lead, and he moved from lane to lane while blocking several drivers. Logano ultimately pulled alongside him after taking the white flag, and he was able to cleanly make the pass for the win. The battle was intense, but none of the drivers kicked off a massive wreck with poor choices or aggressive moves.
“The coolest thing about this race is two veterans showed you can run a race here side-by-side, bump-drafting, and not wreck the field,” Keselowski told FOX Sports. “It can happen if you race respectfully. I thought everybody did a great job. We were right there. Proud of my team and the effort. Nothing much we could do there at the end.”
These comments from Keselowski follow some harsh words from Kyle Busch. The two-time Cup Series champion met with media members and talked about the level of respect in NASCAR. He said that there used to be an “etiquette” in the garage, which drivers such as Tony Stewart and Dale Jarrett put on display. He indicated that this is no longer prevalent.
“We have completely lost any sense of respect in the garage area between drivers,” Busch said at Atlanta Motor Speedway. “That’s where the problem lies. Nobody gives two s**** about anybody else and it’s just a problem where everybody takes advantage of everybody as much as they can.”
The Cup Series Race Capped Off an ‘Eventful’ Weekend
The tripleheader weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway was anything but quiet. The Craftsman Truck Series and Xfinity Series races both had 11 cautions, which set records in the respective series. Both races also ended with a large portion of the fields crashing across the finish line.
The Cup Series race capped off the weekend, and it showed some differences between the national NASCAR series. There were two cautions for stage breaks and three for incidents, but these were not due to disrespectful or aggressive moves.
The first incident was for Bubba Wallace spinning and hitting the inside wall. His No. 23 Toyota Camry blew a tire, and it dropped him multiple laps behind the leaders. He was able to get repairs done on pit road and he was able to rejoin the field as the rest of the first stage and the entire second stage went green all the way.
The third stage had two incidents. The first began when Kevin Harvick got loose while leading, which kicked off an incident that collected 11 other cars and sent multiple to the garage early. It initially appeared that Ross Chastain had wrecked him, but the air between their cars was the culprit.
The final incident was due to another tire issue. Aric Almirola was leading the field during the final stage when a tire blew and immediately sent him spinning. Kyle Larson had nowhere to go, and he slammed into the side of Almirola’s No. 10. The incident also damaged Daniel Suarez’s No. 99, Justin Haley’s No. 31, and Tyler Reddick’s No. 45.
Brad Keselowski Provided Further Details After the Race
Saying that the drivers raced respectfully certainly got the attention of the media members, fans, and viewers at home. Keselowski then went into further detail during his bullpen session on pit road.
The driver of the No. 6 RFK Racing Ford Mustang told media members that he was impressed that the field was able to run the final 40-50 laps of the Cup Series race without wrecking each other.
Keselowski added that he, Logano, and Reddick were all able to race each other hard without making any “crazy” moves or bad decisions. The result was that they were able to cross the finish line and take the checkered flag instead of ending the day in the infield care center.
“I mean, there was a huge shot down the backstretch from the outside lane to get Joey out front and clear,” Corey LaJoie added after the race. “That’s usually when you see guys get crossed up and wrecked. But, that’s why… It was nice to see that we were all professionals today and didn’t run over each other.”