Brad Keselowski saw a respectable finish evaporate on the last lap of the Verizon 200 at The Brickyard. Keselowski spun under the CarShop Bridge out of turn five, which shuffled the driver of the Discount Tire Ford Mustang to 24th-place in the final finishing order. He is now 10th in the NASCAR Cup Series driver standings, 257 points behind leader Kyle Larson.
The highlight of the afternoon for Keselowski was his sixth-place finish in Stage 1. He started the Verizon 200 event in the 31st position and ran a steady pace throughout the first 15-lap stage. Crew chief Jeremy Bullins made the call to stay on the track while others chose to pit near the end of the segment, and Keselowski was rewarded with sixth-place when the segment ended. He remained on the track during the stage caution and restarted in the lead when the race went green on lap 19.
The overall strategy of the race changed for the driver of the Discount Tire Ford in Stage 2. He spun on lap 25 and tagged the outside wall with the rear of his Mustang, causing significant damage. Keselowski pitted for repairs but lost two laps in the process. But as the race played out, Keselowski was able to make up the lost distance thanks to cautions on laps 35 and 40, which twice gave him the free pass to make up the lost laps. When the race went green on lap 43, Keselowski was back on the lead lap.
The final stage was a wild affair with two multiple-car accidents, causing the race to be red flagged twice and pushing the finish into NASCAR Overtime. Keselowski stayed out of trouble and steadily worked his way through traffic. He caught a break on lap 74 when the fourth caution gave him the opportunity to pit for fuel and tires. He lined up 13th for the final restart, but only made it half a lap before misfortune struck, leaving him with a 24th-place finish.
“Not the day we wanted with our Discount Tire Ford,” said Keselowski. “We’ll bounce back next week in Michigan.”