They stole his passport, but not his spirit

July, 29, 2008

ROCHESTER HILLS, Mich. -- Simply put, Brad Keselowski feels violated.

"That's about right," the 24-year-old Nationwide Series driver said Tuesday while trying to find a few moments to spend with his family.

Keselowski's extra firesuits, driving shoes and backpack were stolen Saturday night from the team hauler parked outside the track at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis. But that was the least of it. Also stolen were Keselowski's NASCAR hardcard, his new iPhone and his passport.

The passport might seem insignifcant except that the Nationwide Series heads to Canada this weekend for the road-course race at Montreal.

"That's the scariest part, that they took my passport," he said.

Keselowski waited in line five hours on Monday to apply for a replacement passport, which he needs to fly to Canada. If he doesn't get the passport in time, he likely will fly to Buffalo and then drive across the border.

"It's going to show up," Keselowski said confidently. "This is probably the epitome of a distraction. It's 48 hours of work going backwards, not forward. That's a problem."

He had stopped in Michigan for a two-day break from the grueling 21-day stretch of constant work. He had the lengthy wait at the passport office and another three hours to get a new iPhone.

Has he had time to enjoy his family?

"No," he said flatly. "It's been a nightmare. I was really upset on Sunday, but this puts everything into perspective."

The thieves stole his personal items, but they didn't snatch Keselowski's racing soul.
Angelique S. Chengelis is a contributor to ESPN's NASCAR coverage.


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