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20.05.2018 15:44
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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Brad Keselowskis first Sprint Cup victory came in 2009 at Talladega. And it came in dramatic fashion when he rammed into Carl Edwards as Edwards tried to block him.It was a huge upset in winning a race for car owner James Finch. But that win certainly had controversy, whether Keselowski could have or should have avoided the contact.At the time, Keselowski ranked as a top prospect, but few could predict he would have 20 wins in 250 starts. Some of those wins have come with drama, others more with the focus on Keselowski.Win No. 20 on Saturday night came at a track where Keselowski had never won, the most famous one on the circuit. He led 115 of the 161 laps to capture the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway.Keselowski had won four restrictor-plate races in his career but none at the place that even non-race fans know about.Its been a kick in the you-know-what, Keselowski said about not winning at Daytona. I got down on myself here. We came down here for the 500 and quite honestly we ran like dog crap, but my team worked on it. I didnt give up on them.I believe in my team and my team believes in me and we went to work and we put together a better car.Prior to Saturday night, Keselowski hadnt even been close to winning at Daytona. He had just two top-5s in 14 starts at Daytona. His average finish was 22nd, and he had only one top-15 finish in his past six starts at the track. He had led only one lap in the past four Daytona races and had led 38 laps at the track in his entire Sprint Cup career.Adding his Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series starts at the track, Keselowski was 0-for-30.Ive had very, very little success here, Keselowski said. Its been one of our worst tracks next to Sonoma. Thinking about that, I dont think we had the highest of expectations.But Daytona is always a big race to have success at. I know maybe it doesnt feel the same way that it isnt the 500, but it is still a big deal to me. My family has been coming here for a long time, and Ive had zero success here.This victory, more than the one at Talladega earlier this year, when the focus was on cars going airborne, centered more on Keselowski. The Team Penske driver, though, couldnt avoid a win without some drama as his teammate, Joey Logano, turned Kurt Busch, who was running third at the time and had one of the best cars to challenge Keselowski.It was appropriate, though, that it did have drama. The way Keselowski and Logano have operated, they remain almost on an island when it comes to friends. Thats OK. They have combined for 22 wins in the past 89 races.I wouldnt trade these two drivers for anyone, said team owner Roger Penske, who celebrated his 100th Sprint Cup win as an owner. Theyre young, theyre aggressive, they win races. They work well with the sponsors, and theyre high-integrity guys, so move on from there.Of the two, Keselowski delivered Penske his first Cup championship in 2012. But it was Logano who gave Penske his most recent Daytona 500 win by capturing the sports biggest race last year.Keselowski looked fairly invincible Saturday. He led 46 of the final 57 laps, with Kyle Busch winning the other 11. The final two laps came on a green-white-checkered finish with Kurt Busch maybe the best challenger before he got turned by Logano.I dont know where Logano wanted to go, Busch said. He was going to go from fifth to first? Theres not a chance that he had to win it. We positioned ourselves to be the car to get a run off the bottom. And it just didnt work out with him trying to drive straight through us.Logano indicated it wasnt on purpose.I hate that I got into Kurt there at the end racing to the line, Logano said. I had a run to turn up underneath him, and when you do that, the cars get free and then I was there and he tried to catch it and I was there again. It is a product of this racing, but I hate that it happened.The product of restrictor-plate racing is big wrecks, where the key is to run up front or in the rear to avoid them. The big one happened on lap 90 with 22 cars involved but no injuries.Keselowski was way out in front, and few had cars capable of challenging him after the big wreck.It seemed if we could have got the [No.] 2 car [of Keselowski] out of there, it probably would have been a decent race, but that thing was just so strong that there wasnt much passing him, said Kyle Busch, who finished second with Trevor Bayne, Logano and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. rounding out the top five.Really it took a lot of guys ganging up and getting together in order to make a move on him, Busch added. He was pretty smart about where he positioned his car on the racetrack, and I could see that, and I tried to do some of those same things, but man, it just never really worked for me as good as he could handle it.Buschs comments about Keselowski would not be a surprising analysis of a Keselowski race at Talladega. But Daytona? He hasnt been as good at the sister track to Talladega.Until now.Weve been really strong at Talladega, and weve used a lot of that approach coming here -- and its been awful, Keselowski said. This is quite honestly the first time as a team that weve come to Daytona with a completely different approach than what weve had at Talladega, and it paid off with immediate results. Authentic Celtics Jerseys . To the surprise of many, it isnt the Wolverines but their in-state rivals the Michigan State Spartans. Cyber Monday Celtics Jerseys . 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No, Daniel Winniks right ear is not missing a piece.?The Washington Capitals forward made that clear Saturday, two days after his coach, Barry Trotz, said Winnik lost part of his ear while blocking a shot during a 4-2 win against the Florida Panthers.?I wouldnt say I lost a piece of it, Winnik told reporters Saturday, according to The Washington Post. I mean, its really chewed up, and obviously some scabs and all of that, but no visible missing piece. ... The puck hit basically half ear, maybe a little more ear and helmet. Very fortunate it wasnt way worse.Winnik returned to the ice Saturday morning, knowing all eyes were on him after the injury -- at least as described by Trotz --- became a national story.dddddddddddd?Winnik still knows things could have been a lot worse -- especially since he doesnt wear a visor.?I mean, my face has been banged up a lot over the years, and I still havent worn a visor, Winnik said. I mean Ive probably broken my nose like 15 ?times or something. 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