Brad Keselowski wins 2012 Sprint Cup Championship

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Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images(HOMESTEAD, Fla.) — Brad Keselowski captured his first-career Sprint Cup championship on Sunday.  Coming into the race, the 28-year-old had to finish 15th or better up 20 points on Jimmie Johnson.

Johnson pulled out of the season finale because of a parts failure down the stretch on turns 3 and 4, which sealed the deal for Keselowski.  The championship is also the first for longtime NASCAR owner Roger Penske. 

“This isn’t a one man effort, it’s about these guys (his crew),” said a humbled Keselowski in victory lane.  “We were not as fast as we wanted to be, my guys just did a great job all year long.”

“It’s been a great season,” said Penske.  “Not one failure all year long in that Dodge engine.”

Johnson’s run at a sixth Sprint Cup championship ended with 40 laps to go after he broke a rear end gear in his Chevrolet.

“Pretty heartbreaking,” said Johnson.  “We were doing what we needed to and certainly in position to put a lot pressure on that No. 2 car, but that’s racing, stuff happens.”

Jeff Gordon won the race and was followed by Clint Bowyer after their altercation last weekend at Phoenix.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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