Skip to content

In re-released interview, Brad Keselowski recalls how Rick Hendrick left him heartbroken

Apr 19, 2014, 7:25 PM EST

keselowski

Even though much of NASCAR is on its annual Easter break, a re-released interview with 2012 Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski is definitely going to have tongues once again wagging over the next few days.

Since last season, when he failed to defend his 2012 title, Keselowski has become reflective in several interviews, talking about a variety of subjects including his upbringing, his early-career feud with Carl Edwards and other topics.

A segment of an episode of  the syndicated “In Depth With Graham Bensinger” from late 2012 that featured an interview with Keselowski shortly after he won the Cup crown was re-released three days ago as part of a new program including an interview with defending and six-time Sprint Cup champ Jimmie Johnson.

Bensinger’s syndicated show can be seen on various TV outlets and web sites, including Yahoo Sports.

Keselowski – looking perhaps as somber as we’ve ever seen him, at times seemingly ready to break into tears – discusses how heartbroken, if not potentially betrayed he felt in 2009 when team owner Rick Hendrick picked Mark Martin to drive the No. 5 Chevrolet instead of giving Keselowski the opportunity, even though Bad Brad insists Hendrick had previously promised him that ride in 2010.

Keselowski also talks prominently about how Roger Penske approached him back in 2008, inquiring if the young talent would be interested in joining Team Penske.

“He called me and wanted to know what my situation was essentially,” Keselowski said. “I knew I wanted to do the Hendrick opportunity and go for that. But this is Roger Penske. How can I say no to at least a chance to meet him, so I met him. I sat in that office and he talked to me and I just wanted to hear him talk. I never met the guy, I just wanted to hear him talk. I didn’t know what he had to say.”

Keselowski appreciated Penske’s outreach, but elected to remain with JR Motorsports in the Nationwide Series, believing that he was the heir apparent for the Hendrick-owned No. 5 in 2010.

“I knew what (Penske) meant to the sport, I knew what he meant to Detroit (Keselowski is a native of suburban Detroit),” Keselowski said. “… At the end (of their conversation), he asked me a very simple question, ‘Are you interested?’ I told him I’m a loyal guy, I’ve already made another commitment, but I have a feeling I’ll be back.”

Keselowski’s loyalty to Hendrick didn’t exactly work out the way he thought it would, and as he predicted, Keselowski eventually took Penske up on his offer.

Keselowski recalls it all with crystal clarity as if it happened yesterday.

“As soon as Mark Martin won that race (Phoenix, spring 2009), I knew what that meant, I knew what when he won meant. As soon as he won that race, I knew I wasn’t going to get the ride at Hendrick Motorsports in 2010, the one essentially we’d talked about and I’d been promised. … As soon as (Martin) won Phoenix, he walked up to Mr. Hendrick and said he wanted to drive the car for the next year or two, which essentially there was no spot for me.”

When Bensinger asked Keselowski if he feels Hendrick betrayed him, Keselowski demurred somewhat.

“I never really thought of it as betrayal, I guess,” Keselowski said. “Maybe I did, I don’t know. It was more heartbroken, more chippy. Maybe that’s something that comes from a sense of betrayal, but that’s a strong word. I would say it definitely added fuel to the fire of who I am and my desire to be the best.”

Click on the link below. Some of Keselowski’s comments are definitely eye-opening.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

https://screen.yahoo.com/brad-keselowski-betrayed-rick-hendrick-110000397.html

Latest Posts
  1. Red Bull GRC: Athletes get invited to X Games

    Mar 6, 2015, 6:11 PM EST

    GRCLogo

    First round of athletes competing in Red Bull GRC exhibition at this year’s X Games at COTA announced.

  2. Sauber hits back in legal row with Giedo van der Garde

    Mar 6, 2015, 5:00 PM EST

    AUTO-SIN-F1 Getty Images

    Team principal Monisha Kaltenborn vows to keep the best interests of Sauber at heart as it enters a legal row with its former reserve driver.

  3. Alonso digs at “science fiction” as crash saga rumbles on

    Mar 6, 2015, 4:00 PM EST

    AUTO-F1-ESP-TEST-MCLAREN Getty Images

    Alonso makes light of media reports suggesting that he thought it was 1995 following his crash in pre-season testing.

  4. GP2: Robert Visoiu moves up from GP3 with Rapax

    Mar 6, 2015, 3:00 PM EST

    © GP3 Series © GP3 Series

    Romanian driver to race alongside Sergey Sirotkin in 2015.

  5. Sebastian Vettel first discussed Ferrari move back in 2008

    Mar 6, 2015, 2:00 PM EST

    F1 Testing In Jerez - Day One Getty Images

    German driver reveals that he held secret talks with Ferrari following the 2012 season, but has only made the move to Maranello for 2015.

  6. GP3: Six more drivers announced on a busy Friday

    Mar 6, 2015, 1:00 PM EST

    _G7C0817

    ART, Koiranen and Jenzer all announce drivers ahead of pre-season testing.

  7. Grosjean keen to remind F1 paddock of his ability in 2015

    Mar 6, 2015, 12:05 PM EST

    AUTO-PRIX-F1-ESP-TEST Getty Images

    Frenchman hopes to make up for a difficult 2014 campaign that yielded just eight points in total.

  8. F1 2015 team preview: Scuderia Ferrari

    Mar 6, 2015, 11:00 AM EST

    AUTO-F1-ESP-TEST-FERRARRI Getty Images

    A revolution has taken place at Maranello over the winter following Ferrari’s worst F1 performance in over 20 years.

  9. FIA considering tender for new Formula 1 teams

    Mar 6, 2015, 10:00 AM EST

    Formula E Championship In Buenos Aires - Jean Todt Press Conference Getty Images

    Gene Haas may not be alone in bringing a new team into F1 in the near future.

  10. Manor in “advanced discussion” with drivers over second seat

    Mar 6, 2015, 9:00 AM EST

    F1 Grand Prix of Russia - Previews Getty Images

    After its remarkable comeback, the team is yet to confirm who its second driver will be in Australia.

  11. Big Australian V8 Supercars shocker: Shane van Gisbergen heads to Triple Eight for 2016

    Mar 5, 2015, 6:44 PM EST

    Getty Images Getty Images

    “The Giz” heads to V8SC’s biggest team in a three-year deal as the team’s third car.

  12. IndyCar: Happy 20th birthday to Ganassi rising star Sage Karam

    Mar 5, 2015, 5:23 PM EST

    Getty Images Getty Images

    “SK$” turns 20. Sage Karam will make his second IndyCar start at season-opening race in St. Petersburg.

  13. Jean-Eric Vergne chasing “amazing” home win for Andretti at Miami ePrix

    Mar 5, 2015, 5:00 PM EST

    Formula E Championship - Buenos Aires Getty Images

    JEV wants to clinch Andretti a home win when Formula E hits U.S. shores in Miami later this month.

  14. More movements in GP2, GP3, Formula Renault 3.5 for 2015

    Mar 5, 2015, 4:00 PM EST

    © GP2 Media Service © GP2 Media Service

    All of the latest news from some of F1’s most prominent junior championships.

  15. GP2: Marlon Stockinger confirmed at Status Grand Prix

    Mar 5, 2015, 3:00 PM EST

    _W2Q1556

    Filipino-Swiss driver moves from Formula Renault 3.5 for 2015.

  16. Hamilton: “I want to be better” in bid for third title

    Mar 5, 2015, 2:00 PM EST

    Hamilton 262a Getty Images

    British driver sends out an ominous statement of intent ahead of the first race of the year in Australia on March 15.

  17. F1 2015 team preview: Williams Martini Racing

    Mar 5, 2015, 1:00 PM EST

    F1 Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi Getty Images

    Can Massa and Bottas pick up where they left off at the end of 2014?

  18. Manor passes final crash tests ahead of Australian GP

    Mar 5, 2015, 12:07 PM EST

    AUTO-PRIX-RUS Getty Images

    Team now all set to race in Australia on March 15 after passing the FIA crash tests.