Brad Keselowski: RFK Racing Has Gone from Irrelevant to Relevant in NASCAR Cup Series

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RFK Racing Goes from NASCAR Irrelevant to RelevantJames Gilbert - Getty Images

Brad Keselowski knew he faced a rebuilding situation with RFK Racing during his first year of team co-ownership, but it turned out to be more monumental than he anticipated, making this season’s first 11 weeks even more satisfying.

“We’ve gone from kind of where we were most of last year, which I would have called the irrelevant category to the relevant category,” Keselowski said. “I want to get into the category where we’re a weekly contender and we’re right on the fringe of that.”

Keselowski and teammate Chris Buescher have recorded top-10 finishes for two straight weeks. That’s the first time that has occurred since Keselowski became a team co-owner of Roush-Fenway Racing and RFK Racing was born.


Since the 2023 season began, Keselowski has produced two top-five and five-top 10 finishes. By his calculation, he’s had a shot to win a third of this year’s events. Last year in his first season as co-owner of RFK Racing, he recorded only one top-five and six top-10 finishes.

Buescher, who won last September at Bristol, has two top-five and four top-10 finishes. Last year, he had three top-five and 10 top-10 finishes in 36 races.

Keselowski believes the organization began turning the corner last fall, but noted it was difficult to see because they were buried in the point standings and not playoff contenders. Now, it’s more evident because Keselowski is ninth in the driver standings and Buescher is 12th.

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Chris Buescher, left, and Brad Keselowski are part of a major turnaround at RFK Racing.Sean Gardner - Getty Images

“I think we’re more focused as a company (than we were last year),” commented Keselowski, who noted several personnel changes were made during the off-season.

A second-generation driver, Keselowski approaches a season by dividing it into thirds.

“You have your first third of the season where you kind of unload with all of your pre-season changes, really trying to see who made the right ones during the off-season,” Keselowski said. “Then the middle part of the summer is really about refining who you are, and then you have the playoff push and the third part of the season.

“I feel like we’re entering that second third of the season … and it’s a really important stretch to just try to have a little bit of momentum getting into the playoffs. This stretch specifically is an important part of the season. This part … solidifies who you are as a team.”