Brad Keselowski on a mission to prove 2013, not 2012, was the real fluke season for him


JOLIET, Ill. – Ever since he realized he would not make the Chase for the Sprint Cup last season, Brad Keselowski has been on a mission.

Keselowski wants to prove that 2013 was the real fluke season for him, not 2012 when he won the Sprint Cup championship.

“Definitely, sure,” Keselowski said. “I want another championship. It’s important to me personally. I think we’re in a strong position to make it happen but it’s not a guarantee.

“We’re going to be in this position for years to come. I don’t want to waste the opportunity. On the other side, I’m realistic you can’t win (championships) every year. Sports are cyclical, but this year feels like we’re on the upside of the cycle, I want to hit it hard and make it count.”

And the way Keselowski sees it, he wants to turn a fluke season into seasons of the future.

“To me, it would be an important mark in my career to date (to win another championship),” he said. “I think it would really set the tone to make a run for multiple championships over the next few years, and also personally validate a few of my own challenges and life goals that I want to make up to and live up to.”

That Keselowski was so good in 2012, winning five races and rolling to his and team owner Roger Penske’s first respective Sprint Cup titles, it’s still confounding that 2013 played out the way it did.

Keselowski ultimately became the second Cup champion in recent history to win a championship one season and then failed to make the Chase the next campaign. Tony Stewart was the first to do it, winning in 2005 and missing the Chase in 2006.

So how did he turn things around from last season’s disappointment of not making the Chase to steamrolling into this year’s playoff with a series-high four wins, as well as earning the No. 1 seed heading into this weekend’s Chase kickoff?

Reporters that clustered around Keselowski asked about the change from 2013 to 2014 may have been a little surprised at the simplicity of the changes.

“I don’t know if ‘surprised’ is the right word,” Keselowski said. “I’m happy for it. I think we all knew that’s what we were capable of, and it leads with the execution.”

At the same time, last year’s shortcomings didn’t require complete overhaul, but rather just to tweak certain areas.

“A lot of work from Ford would be the first thing, and a lot of work on the pit crew, and probably a little bit better dialogue between Paul Wolfe and I,” Keselowski said. “Really, just those three things. It wasn’t anything else.

“There’s no difference in the determination, just the confidence behind it, for obvious reasons having won races. The difference between our group now and year’s past when we entered the Chase, we have four wins, where before we had three wins entering the Chase. Plus, I’d say three of our four wins came in dominating form, which is a huge morale booster and, more importantly, a huge confidence booster.”

As determined and serious-minded as he is to sail through the Chase and earn his second championship in three seasons, Keselowski still has a bit of levity in him.

When asked about whether the relationship with crew chief Paul Wolfe has changed from 2012 to this season, Keselowski smiled when he answered.

“(Wolfe’s) got an eight-month old baby now,” Keselowski said. “I’ve seen that side of him evolve, which I think is great. I’d say having me as a driver probably prepared him for having a baby, a huge test of patience.”

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IndyCar at Texas: How to watch, start times, TV info and live streaming, schedule


The NTT IndyCar Series will head to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend for its first oval race of the season and a preview of its biggest race.

After Sunday’s PPG 375 at Texas, the next oval on the schedule is May 28 with the 107th running of the Indy 500. Chip Ganassi Racing dominated last year’s 500-miler at Indianapolis Motor Speedway after placing all four of its Dallara-Hondas in the top 10 at Texas.

The Dallara-Chevrolets of Team Penske also will be heavy favorites at Texas. Josef Newgarden passed teammate Scott McLaughlin on the final lap for the victory last year as Penske took three of the top four (with defending series champion Will Power in fourth).

Texas marks the first of five oval races for IndyCar, which also will visit Iowa Speedway and World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway. There are 28 drivers entered for the 36th IndyCar race at Texas, the series’ most at the track since 30 in June 2011.

Scott Dixon has a series-high five victories at Texas, mostly recently in May 2021. Helio Castroneves (four wins), Newgarden (two) and Power (two) also are multiple winners at Texas.

Here are the details and IndyCar start times for the PPG 375 race weekend at Texas Motor Speedway (all times are ET):


TV: Sunday, noon ET on NBC and streaming on Peacock, the NBC Sports App and Leigh Diffey is the announcer with analysts Townsend Bell and James Hinchcliffe (whose first career IndyCar victory came at St. Petersburg 10 years ago).

Marty Snider and Dave Burns are the pit reporters. Telemundo Deportes on Universo will provide a Spanish-language telecast. Click here for the full NBC Sports schedule for IndyCar in 2023.

Peacock also will be the streaming broadcast for both practices and qualifying and Indy NXT races. (Click here for information on how to sign up for Peacock.)


GREEN FLAG: 12:15 p.m. ET

POSTRACE SHOW ON PEACOCK: After the race’s conclusion, an exclusive postrace show will air on Peacock with driver interviews, postrace analysis and the podium presentation. To watch the extended postrace show, click over to the special stream on Peacock after the race ends.

Peacock also will be the streaming broadcast for practices and qualifying.

INDYCAR RADIO NETWORK: The IndyCar and Indy Lights races and all practices and qualifying sessions will air live on network affiliates, SiriusXM 160, and the IndyCar app.

PRACTICE: Saturday sessions at 9 a.m., 1:45 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. (Peacock Premium), 1:45 p.m.

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II

QUALIFYING: Saturday, 12:15 p.m. (Peacock Premium)

STARTING LINEUP: Click here for the grid at Texas

RACE DISTANCE: The race is 250 laps (375 miles) on a 1.5-mile oval in Fort Worth, Texas

TIRE ALLOTMENT: Eleven primary sets to be used during practice, qualifying and the race. An extra set will be available to cars in the high-line practice session.

FORECAST: According to, it’s expected to be 67 degrees with a 71% chance of rain at the green flag.

ENTRY LIST: Click here for the 28 cars entered


(All times are Eastern)

Friday, March 31

11 a.m.: NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series garage opens

1 p.m.: IndyCar garage opens

3-7 p.m.: IndyCar technical inspection

5 p.m.: IndyCar drivers, team managers meeting

Saturday, April 1

6 a.m.: IndyCar garage opens

8 a.m.: Truck garage opens

9-9:10 a.m.: IndyCar two-stage pit speed limiter practice

9:10-10 a.m.: IndyCar practice (Peacock Premium)

10:30-noon a.m.: Truck practice

12:15-1:15 p.m.: IndyCar qualifying (Peacock Premium)

1:45-2:15 p.m.: IndyCar high-line practice, two groups for 15 minutes apiece (Peacock Premium)

2:30-3:30 p.m.: IndyCar final practice (Peacock Premium)

4:30 p.m.: Truck race (147 laps, 220.5 miles)

Sunday, April 2

7:30 a.m.: IndyCar garage, technical inspection open

11:30 a.m.: Driver introductions

Noon: PPG 375 at Texas (NBC)


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