He battled back from outside the top ten twice on the day to capture the first win in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup in the MyAFibStory.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway. This was his second consecutive win and fifth win on the season.
Keselowski now moves into the second round in the Chase grid called the contender round. He and 11 others will make the move after the race at Dover International Speedway two weeks from now.
Here’s how the rest of the Chase drivers did in the race:
Jeff Gordon finished in second and Kevin Harvick led the most laps on the day with 79. Harvick finished fifth.
Joey Logano picked up some trash on his grille in the last few laps of the race and his engine gave up just prior to the start/finish line. He grabbed a fourth place finish.
Denny Hamlin thought he had a motor issue but it held on in order for him to end up sixth.
Kurt Busch would also suffer a set back after getting into his brother, Kyle Busch, after a late-race restart. Kyle Busch wound up seventh.
Kurt Busch slid while entering pit road and committed a commitment cone infraction while Matt Kenseth slid coming onto pit road several laps later. Busch finished eighth and Kenseth closed the day in tenth.
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., had a solid day and closed the race in 11th.
Jimmie Johnson hovered in the top 10 through most of the day, but went home 12th.
Kasey Kahne had been lapped just prior to one of the six cautions on the day but got the lucky dog and he fought back for a 13th spot in the running order.
Ryan Newman had tire issues and managed to salvage a 15th place finish.
Carl Edwards got into the wall with a left rear tire down on lap 230. He would end up 20th.
The shifter in AJ Allmendinger’s No. 47 broke which created a challenge on restarts. Allmendinger was 22nd.
Greg Biffle finished two laps down in 23rd.
Aric Almirola’s day went up in smoke right after his engine gave way on lap 230. Almirola was 41st.
One can’t ignore the efforts of non-Chase racers Kyle Larson and Jamie McMurray in the race. Larson put on quite a show in the closing laps having passed Kevin Harvick for the lead. He also took on Jeff Gordon and Brad Keselowski on the final restart of the race. The trio went three-wide for the lead. Keselowski ended up threading the needle and getting the lead but Gordon and Larson battled for several laps for track position. Gordon prevailed and Larson had a good third-place run for the No. 42 team on the day.
Jamie McMurray showed power early in the race and led 32 laps. He raced in the top 10 for most of the race can recorded a ninth place finish.
The top ten: Brad Keselowski, Jeff Gordon, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, Jamie McMurray, and Matt Kenseth.
The next race is Sunday, Sept. 21 at 2 p.m. ET for the Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.