News & Media


Behind the Wheel: BKR on the go with Kligerman

July 14, 2011, Brad Keselowski, Special to NASCAR.COM, NASCAR.com

My team owner, Roger Penske, has provided me with a great example of how to run my own organization -- Brad Keselowski Racing -- as we compete in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

I am filled with pride as I look at the Truck Series standings and I see BKR's driver, Parker Kligerman, in fifth place in the championship. When you see Parker on television and he talks about how small of an organization we are, he's not lying. We have four trucks in the shop. We don't go to the wind tunnel. We are not a team full of employees. When our hauler leaves the shop to go to the race track, everyone goes with it.

Kligerman in BKR's 29 (Getty)

Parker Kligerman

2011 season results
RaceSt.Fin.Rank
Phoenix203221
Darlington181416
Martinsville301311
Nashville101010
Dover92113
Charlotte1088
Kansas7118
Texas628
Kentucky525

What we are is a team of true racers that is fortunate to receive support from Penske Racing. Look up and down the finishing order of a Truck Series race. Not only does Parker not have a teammate on the race track, we are the only team that runs a Dodge Ram. Yet here we are coming off two straight second-place finishes, and only two tough results away from challenging for the lead in the points standings.

Parker has gone toe-to-toe with some of the best drivers that the Truck Series has to offer. I truly believe a win is right around the corner for him and the team. It's my job to keep them motivated and to make sure they have everything they need to be successful. If they screw up or I think Parker needs to do better, I will make sure they know that, too. The owner I am today comes from Mr. Penske and also my parents, who have definitely had the most influence over who I am today.

While BKR is at the Truck race in Iowa Speedway this weekend, I'll be at New Hampshire Motor Speedway with both the Miller Lite Dodge Charger and the Ruby Tuesday Dodge Challenger. It's always a lot of fun when we go up to Loudon to race. The fans really love what we do and they show it by filling the stands. It's one of those tracks we can go to and almost guarantee that it will be sold out. It's a 1-mile track, but it races like a short track. There is a lot of beating and banging and bumping and running -- all of the things that the fans love.

NHMS record-setter

• Brad Keselowski broke Rusty Wallace's qualifying record at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this past September, covering his pole-sitting lap at 133.572 mph (28.515 seconds). Wallace, who set his mark in July 2000 with a speed of 132.089 mph, was driving Penske Racing's Blue Deuce (then a Ford). -- Powered by Racing Recall

Loudon will always be a special place for me because it was the site of my first career Cup Series pole position, which came in the first race of the Chase for the championship last year. Unfortunately, our race package wasn't quite as good as our qualifying package and we weren't able to maintain our track position. I believe this year will be different. As a whole were are not only qualifying better than last season in the Miller Lite Dodge, [crew chief] Paul [Wolfe] and I are on the same page as to what we need to finish up front, too.

We'll probably need one more win to secure ourselves a place in this year's Chase and if we keep building cars like we had last week at Kentucky Speedway, in both series, I think we'll accomplish that. We led 79 laps in the Miller Lite machine, which was the most I'd ever led in one race, but we caught some bad breaks on the restarts late in the race and weren't able to get back to the front. That was a bummer because I really wanted to win that first Cup race at Kentucky. The Discount Tire Dodge also had crazy speed over the weekend. We led 132 laps in the Nationwide Series race and I was able to deliver my crew chief, Todd Gordon, his first win with our team. That was special for me. We've had some ups and downs this season, but he has continued to work his tail off to find speed in our cars. I think we're there and I'm confident we'll be a contender for more wins as the season winds down.

This week's fan question comes from Gary Griess. He wants to know if the recent success of Penske Racing is attributed to sharing information.

Thanks for the question, Gary. Sharing information among the different teams within an organization is vital to any team's success, but it's probably more important at Penske Racing because we only field two teams. Take last week's race at Kentucky for example. Paul Wolfe and [No. 22 team crew chief] Steve Addington sat down with our engineers and put together a great plan before we ever left the shop. As it turned out, both cars were both very fast right off the truck. Kurt Busch and I were both able to lay down some fast laps in practice, which proved to be key to the weekend because qualifying was rained out and our practice speeds determined our starting spot. Both Kurt and I were able to start up front and stay there the entire race.

So, yes, sharing information has been vital to our recent success at Penske Racing.

That's it for this week. We have a great two weeks of racing coming up at New Hampshire and Nashville. Tune in to see if we can pick up some more wins.

Behind the Wheel with Brad Keselowski runs every other week on NASCAR.COM as he shares his experiences throughout the season, both at and away from the track. The opinions expressed are solely those of Keselowski. Have a question for Brad? Submit inquiries to bradkeselowski@penskeracing.com and follow him on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/keselowski.