It’s been 13 years since Kurt Busch won the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship.
The reason that’s worth mentioning is because that’s the last time a Ford driver earned the Cup Series title.
Heading into the final race of the 2017 season, veteran driver Brad Keselowski was hoping to put an end to the Blue Oval’s winless streak, which was fitting since he was the only Ford driver to qualify for the Championship 4 event. While Keselowski did manage to lead the EcoBoost 400 early on, that was mostly due to unique pit strategy that put him out of cycle with other drivers.
When it came down to what he could do on the track, Keselowski just didn’t have the speed to compete with the eventual race and championship winner, Martin Truex Jr., as well as runner-up, Kyle Busch. Both of those drivers pilot Toyota Camry stock cars.
If you’ve paid attention to NASCAR at all this season, then you know that Keselowski has repeatedly complained that Toyota teams had an unfair downforce advantage over Ford and Chevy race cars.
Prior to the season, Toyota redesigned its Camry stock car to coincide with the release of the all-new Camry sedan. Keselowski felt that Toyota had an edge over the competition as soon as he laid eyes on the remodeled Camry.
“When (the 2018 Camry) rolled out at Daytona and I think we all got to see it for the first time and I think there was two reactions: One, we couldn’t believe NASCAR approved it; and two, we were impressed by the design team over there,” Keselowski said, according to RACER.com. “With that said, I don’t think anyone ever had a shot this year the second that thing got put on the racetrack and approved. It kind of felt like Formula 1 where you had one car that made it through the gates heads and tails above everyone and your hands are tied because you’re not allowed to do anything to the cars in those categories that NASCAR approves to really catch up.
“As to what will happen for 2018, I don’t know. I would assume that Chevrolet will be allowed to design a car the same way that Toyota was for this one, but Ford doesn’t have any current plans for that. If that’s the case, we’re going to take a drubbing next year, so we’ll have to see.”
There have been rumors that Ford could switch from Fusion to Mustang body styles in 2018 to compete with Chevrolet’s recently announced Camaro ZL1 race car, but that hasn’t been confirmed.
Nevertheless, Keselowski still seems excited about the 2018 season judging from a message that he Tweeted Monday morning.