Rochester Hills Mayor Bryan Barnett applauded the town’s own Brad Keselowski at the White House on Tuesday for being the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series defending driver’s champion.
President Obama held a special ceremony honoring last year’s champion on the South lawn of the White House as the 2013 NASCAR chase for the Sprint Cup rounds the curve.
“I’ve been to the White House several times but it’s always a very cool experience,” Barnett said of Tuesday’s event.
With about 50 people in attendance, the President spoke about the recent Boston Marathon bombing but reinforced that America remains vigilant and we’re working to find out who was responsible, Barnett shared.
The President transitioned by saying America must continue to push forward and part of that is recognizing great achievements like Keselowski’s.
After the ceremony, Barnett had a change to talk with the President and Keselowski to banter about growing up in Rochester Hills.
Keselowski thanked Barnett for coming and was glad to see him there, Barnett said.
“I just reiterated that his home town is very proud of him and his accomplishments and the way he’s handling himself and that we of course wanted to be there to help recognize his achievement,” Barnett said.
The military band even played car-themed tunes for the crowd.
“It was a really nice ceremony,” he said.
With the Sprint Cup Series revved up in February, Keselowski of Penske Racing holds second place, nine points shy of first—Jimmi Johnson and nine points ahead of Kyle Busch.
The chase for the Sprint Cup will be well into the 2013 season but Barnett hopes Keselowski can showcase his skill once more.
“I do watch it when I know he’s in it but it’s always cool to see the connection,” he said.
The next race—the STP 400 is this Sunday, April 21 at 1 p.m. at the Kansas Speedway in Kansas City.
LATEST UPDATES: As of Wednesday, there is some controversy following NASCAR’s decision to revoke 25 points for Keselowski and teammate Joey Logano on penalty charges of unapproved suspension systems prior to Saturday’s race in Texas. Be sure to follow the latest news for more details.
For more information on Keselowski or upcoming Sprint Cup Series races, be sure to visit www.NASCAR.com.
Keselowski’s also runs Checkered Flag Foundation that helps active military members, veterans, first responders and their families. Visit the website at www.checkeredflagfoundation.org.