Get the latest Matt Kenseth news, media, stats, and standings for the NASCAR Nationwide Series driver only on the official site of NASCAR.
Get the latest Matt Kenseth news, media, stats, and standings for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver only on the official site of NASCAR.
2003 champion says everyone has breaking point MORE: Keselowski responds " Full timeline of events in Kenseth -Keselowski dust up RELATED: Follow your picks in the Perfect Chase Grid Challenge for chance at $100,000 prize TALLADEGA, Ala. -- Everyone has his or her "breaking point," Matt Kenseth said, and the Joe Gibbs Racing driver reached his following contact from Brad Keselowski during and after Saturday night's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway . Kenseth pursued the Team Penske driver moments after the completion of the Bank of America 500 , grabbing Keselowski before crewmen from both teams, along with officials, rushed in to separate the two drivers. "Last week it was bad enough to run bad all night and to be frustrated; then get two tires and get toward the front (near the end of the race) -- Brad clearly saw me roll outside of him and he hung a right on purpose and he ran me right into the wall, ruined my night and possibly took us out of Chase contention," Kenseth said Friday at Talladega Superspeedway . "So I was mad enough about that. To come down afterward and have your (safety equipment) off and your net down and come and pull those high school stunts … after the race is just absolutely unacceptable. "That definitely put me over the edge. I don't regret my actions; I'm not proud of them or happy about them or anything like that. … But I don't regret them. I don't know that I'd do anything different if the same thing would have gone down again." Keselowski moved up the track during a late-race restart, thwarting Kenseth's momentum and resulting in contact with the wall. Later, with six laps remaining, Kenseth was one of several drivers to take the wave around to get back on the lead lap without pitting. At that time, he said Friday, he did "swerve" at Keselowski "because I was mad he put me in the wall and totally ruined my day." Keselowski said after the race that Kenseth "came back and swung at my car and tore the front of the car off." Kenseth said the 2012 champion "is greatly exaggerating." "If you watch video you can see he had no marks on his right front of his car after that," Kenseth said. "He said it tore his whole right front off. … That was just him greatly exaggerating the story." As the field began to make its way to pit road, Keselowski attempted to spin Denny Hamlin (JGR), then struck the side of Kenseth's car as they came onto pit road. Keselowski ran into the back of Tony Stewart after hitting Kenseth . Stewart reacted by putting his car in reverse and backing into Keselowski, crumpling the front end of the No. 2 Ford. Hamlin attempted to confront Keselowski in the garage area, but all parties had gone their separate ways when Kenseth went after the Team Penske driver. "I just wanted to get to him, I guess," Kenseth said. "Not sure what I wanted to do when I got there. It was obvious I didn't really have a plan, right? "You never want to get into confrontations, at least I don't. I like to avoid them. I'm definitely not built for fighting; it's not really in my genes, it's not something I ever really want to do." NASCAR fined Keselowski ($50,000) and Stewart ($25,000) for their actions and placed both drivers on probation for the next four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events. The sanctioning body did not penalize Kenseth or Hamlin. Three of the four -- Kenseth , Keselowski and Hamlin -- are among 10 drivers vying for one of eight spots in the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Two spots have already been determined, with wins by Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick automatically advancing those two drivers. Hamlin enters Sunday's GEICO 500 (ESPN, 2 p.m. ET) seventh in points; Kenseth and Keselowski are two of four drivers currently outside the top eight, along with six-time champion Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr . "I was probably more upset about getting (run) into the wall than I would have maybe been on week two of the season," Kenseth said. "There's probably a little bit (of frustration) there and some of that is frustration from the season of not running to our potential and being taken out of the Chase." Kenseth , the 2003 series champion, won seven races with JGR last year in his first season with the organization, but is winless thus far this year. "The stuff afterward of getting hit after the race, my reaction to that was besides taking my stuff off and thinking it's ridiculous to get hurt after a race is over by somebody acting like a little kid using a car for a weapon," he said. "I thought that was ridiculous, but that's the second time he's done that this year just to me. After the Richmond race he came and wiped us out down in Turn 2 and then came down pit road and took another slug at me and knocked the side off our car. "Besides people having to pay for (the cars) and work on them and all that stuff, it's just not acceptable. After that happening again was probably most of my reaction." MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
2012 series champion discusses incident with Joe Gibbs Racing driver MORE: Full coverage of Kenseth -Keselowski incident " Kenseth : 'I don't regret my actions' RELATED: Follow your picks in the Perfect Chase Grid Challenge for chance at $100,000 prize TALLADEGA, Ala. – Brad Keselowski , fined $50,000 following last week's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway , isn't ready to discuss if he regrets his actions. One of four drivers outside the top eight in points in this year's Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Keselowski said Friday at Talladega Superspeedway that "I haven't put a lot of thought into it, to be honest." "I have been busy testing at Martinsville (Speedway) and getting ready for this weekend," he said. "It is a huge weekend for me and our team where we have to really pull out a clutch moment and I don't want to lose sight of that by spending a whole bunch of time on all that other garbage. "I am not going to say I haven't spent any time on it but I didn't spend enough to really have all my thoughts and feelings put together enough to share it." Keselowski struck the driver’s side of Matt Kenseth 's car as the field came to pit road following the completion of last week's Bank of America 500 . He also ran into the back of Tony Stewart 's car, unintentionally it appeared. He was pursued by Denny Hamlin as the two made their way through the garage area, and by night's end was involved in an altercation with Kenseth between two team haulers. Kenseth called Keselowski's actions on the track, which also included contact on a late-race restart, "high school stunts." Keselowski said he was aware of his fellow competitor's comments, included talking about an incident at Richmond earlier this year as well as damage he contends Kenseth did to his Team Penske entry while taking the "wave around" following a late caution. "We had a little contact at Richmond," he said. As for the contact, "( Kenseth ) is always entitled to his opinion as I am to mine. We are both entitled to (our) opinions. Obviously we have a difference of them or what happened Saturday wouldn't have happened." Both Keselowski and Stewart were fined for their post-race actions at CMS last week (NASCAR officials clipped Stewart for $25,000). "Maybe I should have had a bigger one, I don't know," Keselowski said. "I thought (Sprint Cup Series Managing Director) Richard Buck was really classy and I thought that was really nice of him. It isn't something that I didn't understand." Other drivers weren't pointing fingers or placing blame a week after the incident, instead citing the pressure of the new format along with the pressure of competing against 42 others for the better part of a year. Disagreements are going to occur. "We all have frustrations toward each other at some point," Richard Childress Racing's Ryan Newman said. "And we can get along with each other five days later. That's part of what we do." Six-time series champion Jimmie Johnson said Keselowski's "always been a pretty tough racer. "He's in a position where he doesn't want to be in right now, along with a few other guys," Johnson said. "When you're in that position, it's hard to hit that 100-percent mark. Sometimes you end up at 105 or 120 and you end up doing things you might not want to or make little mistakes that cost others." Keselowski, along with Johnson, Kenseth and Dale Earnhardt Jr ., are outside the top eight in points heading into Sunday’s GEICO 500 (ESPN, 2 p.m. ET). Only the top eight remain in title contention and two of those eight slots have already been taken by Contender Round winners Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick . Keselowski said he isn't worried about losing the respect of his peers. Earning that respect is important, but "I think you have to temper that with the knowledge that when you are successful you are a target. "That isn't just me, that is everyone," he said. "That is just part of the ebbs and flows we talk about all the time." MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
See how the two drivers stack up statistically RELATED: Video of the confrontation " Keselowski addresses actions The graphic below offers a by-the-numbers comparison of Brad Keselowski and Matt Kenseth . MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
Matt Kenseth runs down Brad Keselowski and an argument ensues at the haulers after an on track altercation between the two erupts after the Bank of America 500.
Kevin Harvick makes a pit stop to address what he thought was a flat tire, when actually all four tires were up. Meanwhile, Matt Kenseth has a flat tire sending him to pit road as well.
Brad Keselowski explains what happened tonight on and off track with Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth after the race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Charlotte combatants together again after unapproved adjustments
Team Penske uses Logano's locked-in status to its advantage RELATED: Follow your picks in the Perfect Chase Grid Challenge for chance at $100,000 prize TALLADEGA, Ala. -- As cars whipped around Talladega Superspeedway in the second attempt at a green-white-checkered finish, Brad Keselowski had teammate Joey Logano just behind him. Logano threw a block to stave off a charging Kevin Harvick , keeping Keselowski out front in his battle with Ryan Newman . After his win at Kansas Speedway , Logano was a lock to advance into the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. His teammate, however, needed a win to continue on after two poor performances at Kansas and Charlotte. Team Penske owner Roger Penske made Logano's obligations clear. "It's pretty simple," Penske said. "With the structure of the Chase, he was already committed into the next round, so we sat down with he and Brad and (Ryan) Blaney and said, 'Whatever you can do today to help the 2 car get in the winner's circle, that's what you have to do.' And I think he obeyed orders pretty well." Not every team had that luxury. Hendrick Motorsports had all four drivers winless and battling to make the next round: Jeff Gordon , Kasey Kahne , Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Only Gordon advanced to the next round. There was little teamwork between the Hendrick drivers; no pushes to the front or blocks to keep a teammate into the lead. Earnhardt and Johnson both needed a win to move on, and often found themselves battling each other for the lead. "(The Penske) situation for teammates worked out pretty nice, because Joey was locked in," Johnson said. "My situation with the 88, who I ran around a lot -- I had to win. I had to beat him in order to transfer, so it was more of a competition than thinking, 'Hey, there's my buddy, there's my teammate. Let's race.' " The Joe Gibbs Racing group was in a similar position. None of the team's cars had clinched advancement into the next round. Kyle Busch appeared to have the biggest buffer, coming into Talladega second in the points standings, six points away from Logano. Denny Hamlin was just above the cutoff in seventh, while Matt Kenseth was in ninth place, the first elimination position. Each driver was on a different strategy. Hamlin and Kenseth advanced to the Eliminator Round, while a wreck runied Busch's day and saw him finish on the wrong side of the Chase cut line. "(I) hate lagging in the back, but couldn't afford to have what happened to the 18 happen to us and take our chances out," Hamlin said of his 18th-place finish. "Still proud of our effort and happy that we made it." Kevin Harvick was able to take chances for Stewart-Haas Racing , but is the only remaining driver on the four-car team's roster still in competition for a title this year. Part of his effort went toward helping Kurt Busch , who was eliminated after the first round of the Chase, to a seventh-place finish. "I felt like on the last restart that Bowyer was going to be our catalyst, but it ended up he didn’t stay attached to our rear bumper, so I couldn't get to Newman in time and that outside groove was going," Busch said. "So, I had to get to the middle to salvage what I could, and that was seventh. I just have to thank Kevin Harvick for being a great teammate all day today." Getting that push when it mattered prove to be a win-or-go-home moment. Johnson said he knew he was "in trouble" when, after a late restart, he moved to a new line and had nobody behind him. Keselowski, on the other hand, had that push. Their points reset to level the playing field at 4,000 points coming into the Eliminator Round, so neither Penske driver will have the benefit of a locked-in teammate ready to throw a block at Martinsville Speedway . For Hendrick Motorsports and Stewart-Haas Racing, both with only one car remaining in title contention, Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick , teammates will be at the ready. "Moving forward, Jeff and Kasey and Junior have always been amazing team players for me on my championship runs," Johnson said. "And I'll do my best to help them." MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation