Newton, IA – Brad Keselowski bounced back from a pit road violation and then dealt with an overheating issue to win Saturday night's U.S. Cellular 250 Nationwide Series race at Iowa Speedway.
Keselowski, who was the only Sprint Cup Series regular to compete in this 250- lap race, received a penalty for a tire outside of his pit stall during a round of stops in the early going. The engine in his No. 22 Penske Racing Ford began to overheat before he pitted for the second time just past the halfway point.
During his last pit stop under caution with less than 50 laps remaining, Keselowski made a four-tire change while most of the other front runners took just two new tires. Keselowski ran in seventh for the restart but quickly charged to the front and passed Brian Vickers for the lead with 35 laps to go.
Sam Hornish Jr. chased down Keselowski in the closing laps, but Keselowski held off his Penske teammate by 0.5 seconds for his third Nationwide win of the season and the 23rd of his career. He won the inaugural race at this 0.875-mile racetrack in August 2009.
"This Penske Racing team just didn't give up," Keselowski said. "They kept working on the car and kept fighting back. I knew it was going to be about that last restart and being really aggressive. But that's what it takes to win these races when you have to overcome adversity."
After the race at Iowa, Keselowski traveled back to Pocono Raceway, where he will start 11th in Sunday's 400-mile Sprint Cup race. The defending series champion is presently 13th in the point standings and has yet to win this season.
Earlier in the day, Ryan Blaney drove his No. 29 Brad Keselowski Racing Ford to victory in the Camping World Truck Series race at Pocono.
"Congratulations to Ryan; he won in my truck today in Pocono," Keselowski noted. "I tell you what, it's been a heck of a day."
Hornish's second-place run came one week after he finished a season-worst 34th at Indianapolis.
"It was a great night and a really good job at Penske Racing with a 1-2 finish," Hornish said. "Our Ford Mustangs were really fast. I'm really proud of what we were able to do."
Vickers ended up finishing third, while Austin Dillon took the fourth spot. Dillon led a race-high 116 laps before he made a four-tire change during his last pit stop as well. He ran in fifth for the restart following his stop but could not move back up to the lead.
In June, Dillon put on a dominating performance at Iowa by starting on the pole and leading 207 of 250 laps. But Dillon gave up the top spot to Trevor Bayne with 22 laps to go, as Bayne went on to score the victory.
Rookie Kyle Larson finished fifth, followed by Drew Herring, who started on the pole and led the first 26 laps in the No. 54 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing. Kyle Busch has driven the No. 54 car to victory in eight Nationwide races this season. Herring rebounded from a spin that forced the first caution on lap 55.
Alex Bowman, Elliott Sadler, Ryan Gifford and Bayne completed the top-10. Gifford, a K&N Pro Series East competitor as well as a Drive for Diversity and NASCAR Next Driver, made his Nationwide debut, driving the No. 33 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing.
Dillon now holds a 14-point lead over Regan Smith, who finished 11th, and Hornish. Sadler trails Dillon by 19 points, while Vickers is 28 out of the lead.