NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Brad Keselowski has a date with the White House. The event with President Barack Obama is scheduled for April 16.
Keselowski and his team will be heralded for their accomplishments and work in the community. He’ll also visit wounded troops.
The Michigander celebrated his first title guzzling a huge glass of beer at Homestead, Fla. on live TV, and has been heralded as a throwback type of driver compared to those considered more “corporate,” such as Jimmie Johnson.
Keselowski made headlines for other reasons Thursday, suggesting the fact this week’s race at Texas Motor Speedway is sponsored by the National Rifle Association isn’t really news.
A series of tweets exchanged between he and USA Today NASCAR reporter Nate Ryan included Keselowski saying, “I have the perspective of a driver, participant and fan of the sport, along with proprietor of rifles and a US citizenship. With those credentials, I still respectfully disagree with this being as serious of a story as its been made out.”
Marco Andretti confident that fewer tests won’t hurt Andretti Autosport
A small point of debate around the 2018 aero kit has been the manufacturer test days that took place through the Fall of 2017 and into the beginning of 2018. Chiefly, the debate has centered around teams who hadn’t participated in those manufacturer test days and if they’re starting the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season at a disadvantage as a result.
Team Penske, Ed Carpenter Racing, and A.J. Foyt Racing completed test days for Chevrolet, with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing doing so for Honda.
That left teams like Andretti Autosport out of the mix, with some voicing concerns as a result.
However, in a press conference during testing at ISM Raceway last weekend, Marco Andretti explained that he thinks Andretti Autosport should be able to catch up on development, citing the team’s resources – they’re the only IndyCar team with four full-time cars in their stable – and the fact that everyone is still adapting to the new kit.
“I feel like it’s early enough days that, yes, we can catch up,” Andretti said at ISM Raceway. “When there is anything new, a new car, new aero kit, at-track days are huge. We can sim all these things we want. To really get out there and confirm what we’re learning back at the shop is another thing.”
Andretti continued, “Yeah, I don’t think we should look at it like we’re behind the eight ball. With a four-car team, that’s where we can use it to our benefit. So far so good.”
Teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay, echoed Andretti’s sentiments, adding that while the situation is not perfect, they will need to adapt to it in order to remain competitive.
“Any time you have a new car, to put it into perspective, we’re on track three days on a road course before we get to (the season open in St. Petersburg). That’s a very short amount of time. It’s obviously not ideal, but we’re just going to lace up our boots and get on with it. That’s all you can do.”
Andretti Autosport will have one more team test, at Sebring International Raceway later on in February, before the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.