DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.—Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano cleared the air following an on-track incident during the Busch Clash that sent the No. 2 Ford to the sidelines in Sunday’s race.
Keselowski was collected 66 laps into the race after leading half of those circuits. He finished 17th of the 18 cars entered.
The longest-tenured Team Penske driver took umbrage with Logano for blocking Kyle Busch and setting the six-car wreck into motion—and sending Keselowski to the sidelines at Daytona International Speedway.
“I just got wrecked for no reason,” Keselowski said. “Dumb, dumb racing. Dumb moves being thrown out there. Guys that don't know what they are doing so they throw crazy blocks. It is just ridiculous. We shouldn’t be wrecking all these cars.
“I am not Tony Stewart, I am not as smart as he is and he can say it a lot better than I could but this is just dumb. We had a good race car. The MoneyLion Ford was capable of winning the race, led a lot of the race and we got destroyed for no reason.”
Logano claims he made “a good block” but was tagged from behind by Kyle Busch. Logano was collected 12 laps later. As Keselowski predicted, a Toyota—Erik Jones—went on to win the race.
“All you can do is just try to explain your side of the story of what happened,” Logano said. “There are different perspectives on the whole thing and I had no clue. I was like, ‘Hey, what are you mad about? Let’s talk about it.’ There were things that I had no idea about and I just explained my side of the story. That’s all you can really do.
“I think once he understands the whole side of the story, and you know how it is, you get out of the race car, you’re frustrated, you’re mad, your emotions are running high, you haven’t re-watched anything yet and they stick a microphone in your face and ask you what happened. You don’t really know until you go back and study it and figure it all out.”
The teammates have enjoyed a tight-knit relationship over the years. Their families often spend time together away from the track. Keselowski was instrumental in recruiting Logano into the Team Penske fold in 2013. But in six seasons, Keselowski has never been this critical of his teammate. On Wednesday, he declined to comment on their post-race conversation.
“That stuff happens, but, like I said, we’ve been friends for a long time,” Logano said. “We’ve been able to figure stuff out before he said afterward. I’m not really that worried about it. It’s gonna be OK. We’re gonna figure it out. Everything always blows by. Everything gets better all the time.”
On Thursday, all three Team Penske Fords will compete in the first qualifying race for starting positions in Sunday’s Daytona 500. Logano rolls off sixth, Keselowski 12th and Ryan Blaney 14th. As is the case on superspeedways, Logano will need to rely on allies if he hopes to win a second Daytona 500.
“We’ve always been competitive with each other,” Logano said. “It’s something that makes a great teammate is someone that can challenge you, someone that can make you better. We were talking about that the other day. I think Brad’s been that person for me all the time and we kind of go back and forth. One team runs better than the other for six or seven weeks and then it swaps and then it swaps. That’s good to have someone like that, that can challenge you. So that competition is always there either way, but the ability to work together also needs to be there.
“We’ll see. We’re gonna have different opinions on a lot of things all the time. That’s part of racing and things like that, but I think we’ll be fine.”