Keselowski enjoyed a breakout 2011 season, winning three races and finishing fifth in points in the iconic Penske “Blue Deuce” No. 2 Dodge Charger, making him one of the preseason NASCAR Sprint Cup championship favorites.
Team owner Roger Penske dropped a bombshell Thursday morning when he announced his NASCAR Sprint Cup team will end its 10-year association with Dodge and move back to Ford in 2013. But Keselowski doesn’t think that will hurt the team now.
“I don’t have any concerns about it, to be honest,” Keselowski said Friday morning at Phoenix International Raceway, site of Sunday’s Subway Fresh Fit 500, which will be televised live on FOX at 3 p.m. ET. “I think there’s a lot of reasons. It’s hard to answer that question without getting into the proprietary things that it takes to get support from a manufacturer. But the things that I do see, I’m not worried about or concerned.”
So far this year, Keselowski, crew chief Paul Wolfe and sponsor Miller Brewing Co. all have signed long-term contract extensions. According to Keselowski, the move from Dodge to Ford was the final puzzle piece in ensuring that Penske Racing will be competitive for years to come.
“I think if you look at that, there’s a big picture going here, and that is that Penske Racing wanted to have every duck in a row for the long term,” said Keselowski.
“The goal that we all have is to win a Sprint Cup championship at Penske Racing,” Keselowski said. “And to be able to do that, I feel like we have to have the best people possible. It’s a team sport. And in order to have the best people possible, we have to have a consistent platform of resources around us. And that means having a platform that they know, for years on end, is going to be there. ... All those ducks have got to be in a row.”
Keselowski said he’s confident the move to Ford will be a positive for the team.
“That was the piece that I feel like puts us in a position to make a run for the championship for the next few years,” he said. “ ... I think there were some limitations in making that happen with the road we were on, so we changed roads.”
Tom Jensen is the Editor in Chief of SPEED.com, Senior NASCAR Editor at RACER and a contributing Editor for TruckSeries.com. You can follow him online at twitter.com/tomjensen100.