Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

NASCAR Notebook; for Most Part, Drivers Behaved Themselves

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

NASCAR Notebook; for Most Part, Drivers Behaved Themselves

Article excerpt

Byline: Don Coble

There was a lot of beating and banging at the end of Sunday's race at Texas Motor Speedway as well as a dramatic "slide-job" pass by Jimmie Johnson to win.

But unlike the past few weeks, drivers were appreciative and respectful of each other after the race.

Brad Keselowski led 312 of 334 laps. He bounced off a car driven by Martin Truex Jr. late in the race. After that, Keselowski's car wasn't as dominant, and that allowed Johnson to make the aggressive pass with four laps remaining.

Afterward, there were no hard feelings.

"We just rubbed a little bit there in the tri-oval," Truex said. "No big deal at all. We were both racing hard. Good hard racing-rubbing a little. Rubbing is racing. It was fun."

Johnson waited for the perfect time to dive inside of Keselowski's car. Once he did, his car quickly veered in front of Keselowski's front bumper with just a couple of inches to spare.

"Then it was a good old-fashioned race. Just race your guts out. That part was fun," Johnson said. "I had a great time with it. Clearly Brad had a lot on the line. Thankful he ran as hard and clean as he did. We just went out there and raced hard."

Keselowski said even with recent penalties to Matt Kenseth and Danica Patrick for over-aggressive driving, he hasn't changed his style. And while he's always willing to push the limits, he accepts that others will do the same to him.

"I don't think I changed any concerning the last few weeks," Keselowski said. "It was pretty clear before and remains clear, that you can race hard for a win, make contact that's reasonable, kind of prudent for the situation. I don't feel like that's changed."


There was a collective sigh from six of the eight drivers in the Chase for the Championship when Johnson passed Keselowski with four laps remaining Sunday to win at Texas Motor Speedway. …

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