Brad Keselowski Passes Up Chance in Sprint Cup

Kelly CrandallSenior Writer IAugust 24, 2008

Silly season is in full swing. Drivers going here, staying there, sponsors coming in, and sponsors pulling out. Let's start with what we do know.

We know: Tony Stewart will be leaving behind Joe Gibbs Racing and will start Stewart-Haas Racing.

We know: Ryan Newman will leave behind the No. 12 car and join Tony Stewart.

We know: Casey Mears will join Richard Childress Racing in the No. 07 car with Jack Daniels, and Clint Bowyer will move to the team's No. 33 car for General Mills.

We know: Mark Martin will be in the vacated Casey Mears No. 5 machine full-time in 2009, and Aric Almirola will pilot the No. 8.

Now what we don't know is who will drive the No. 20 car that is empty because of Tony Stewart, even though it's getting pretty obvious that it will be Joey Logano. The official announcement is tomorrow, and if anyone other than Logano is named it will come as a shock to many.

We also don't know who will be going to Penske Racing and the defending Daytona 500 winner's team, but I can tell you who it won't be: Brad Keselowski.

Keselowski drives for Dale Earnhardt, Jr. in the Nationwide Series and is currently in contention for the championship with fellow driver Clint Bowyer. He sits 122 points behind Bowyer with nine races to go.

But last Tuesday it was reported that Keselowski spent the day at the Penske Racing shop and has been offered the No. 12 car in Sprint Cup.

He declined.

Keselowski said that he will be returning to Jr. Motorsports and the No. 88 Nationwide team next year, and is speculated to take over the No. 5 Hendrick car in the coming years.

Mark Martin will drive the car full-time next season, but if Martin chooses to step aside in 2010 or do a split schedule, Keselowski looks to be the next in line.

For now he'll stick to the Nationwide Series and owner Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

So, who will drive the No. 12 car? It's been rumored that David Stremme is the logical choice. He is under a testing contract with Penske and has run very well this year in the Nationwide Series for owner Rusty Wallace. And oh, by the way, his sponsor in the Nationwide Series is Penske Trucking.

But for now, there has been nothing signed and no announcements. Let the wondering continue...