|No. 2 team captured win No. 4 in 2012 at Chicago (Getty)|
JOLIET, Ill. -- After firing the opening salvo in the Chase for the Sprint Cup, Brad Keselowski said winning the Geico 400 felt like "Round 1 of a heavyweight title bout."
It's fitting because the Penske Racing driver is trying to outbox five-time champion Jimmie Johnson on the track while trading psychological haymakers with NASCAR's current version of Muhammad Ali.
"Yeah, that's part of it, for sure," Keselowski said. "We all know how good his team is. We all know how good he is. Look at the resume over the last 10 years. It's impeccable. To be racing him, whether for the lead or for 10th is an accomplishment."
Sunday, it was for the lead -- in what seems likely to become a recurring storyline.