Budweiser Racing Team Notes of Interest
• Kevin Harvick and the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet team finished seventh in the 54th running of the Daytona 500 that ended early Tuesday morning after being delayed one day by rain and more than two hours by a fire that erupted as a car made contact with a jet dryer in Turn 3.
• Harvick started the race from the 13th position and hit the orange pit road commitment cone as a wreck occurred on lap 2, causing minimal damage to the front end of the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet. The team pitted twice to work on the nose and changed tires, added fuel and made a small chassis adjustment. Harvick restarted the race from the 34th position when the field took the green at lap 7.
• Following the early incident, the No. 29 team elected to run toward the back of the field until about lap 130 in an effort to keep the car intact for the end of the race. During that time, Harvick and the group of drivers he was running with worked to stay in line as best they could to remain within range of the lead pack of cars.
• The caution flag waved at lap 128 in the middle of green-flag stops. Crew chief Shane Wilson called Harvick to pit road for four tires and fuel and the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet restarted from the 11th position at lap 132. Harvick made his way up as high as third while working the bottom line at lap 147.
• The team made their final pit stop of the night at lap 158 and Wilson called for a two-tire stop with fuel. While still under caution, the No. 42 car made contact with a jet dryer in Turn 3, sparking a large jet fuel fire. Safety personnel helped get the drivers of the car and the truck out of their vehicles and then worked to put out the fire as more than 200 gallons of jet fuel burned. NASCAR stopped the field on the track for a red flag period that lasted more than two hours as track crews worked to extinguish the flames, remove the truck from the banking and clean the track surface.
• The race restarted just after midnight with less than 40 laps to go. Harvick took the green flag in the third position and worked the bottom line until the caution flag waved again on lap 177 for a two-car incident.
• On the restart, he worked the outside lane with help from his Richard Childress Racing (RCR) teammate, Jeff Burton. Less than 10 laps later the caution flag waved again as a seven-car wreck erupted just behind Harvick. He was scored in the fifth position when the field took the green flag with seven laps to go.
• The final caution of the night flew just three laps later, and pushed the race into overtime with a green-white checkered finish. Harvick restarted in the sixth position, while his RCR teammates Burton and Paul Menard restarted on the bottom in the fifth and seventh spots, respectively. Without drafting help, Harvick did the best he could to stay ahead of the two-car tandems behind him and took the checkered flag in the seventh position.
• Matt Kenseth won the Daytona 500. Dale Earnhardt Jr., Greg Biffle, Denny Hamlin and Burton completed the top-five spots.
• Kenseth also holds the lead in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings by five points over Earnhardt Jr. Biffle, Hamlin and Burton completed the top-five. Harvick is ranked seventh,10 points back from the leader.
• Follow along each weekend with Harvick and the team on Twitter. Check out @KevinHarvick for behind-the-scenes information straight from the driver of the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet. Get live updates from the track each weekend from @Black29Car, the PR team for Harvick. Also, follow @RCRracing and @RCR29KHarvick for additional information about the Richard Childress Racing organization. Fans can also interact with Harvick on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/OfficialKevinHarvick.
Kevin Harvick on his finish in the Daytona 500: “Right off the bat we got into a little argument with the cone (the orange commitment cone) there. We had to come in and fix the hole in the nose. We just decided to take care of the car for the first hundred laps and make sure it didn’t get too hot. Then there at the end, we just couldn’t get everything organized. You want to be in the front when you have those green-white-checkered situations like that because you can’t get everybody from the first two back attached enough to get going. Overall it was a good day for our Budweiser Chevy and definitely a lot better than last year when we left here.”
The following is the finish position of the other beverage-sponsored cars participating in the Daytona 500:
• Dale Earnhardt Jr. and the No. 88 Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevrolet team finished second.
• Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge, finished 32nd.
• Robby Gordon and the No. 7 MAPEI/Menards/SPEED Energy Dodge team finished 41st.
The following is the finish position of the other Richard Childress Racing teams participating in the Daytona 500:
• Jeff Burton and the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet team finished fifth.
• Paul Menard, driver of the No. 27 Menards/Peak Chevrolet finished sixth.
• Elliott Sadler and the No. 33 General Mills/Kroger Chevrolet team finished 27th.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams will travel to Phoenix International Raceway this week for Sunday’s Subway Fresh Fit 500. There are two practice sessions scheduled for Friday, the first at 2:30 p.m. EST and the second at 5:30 p.m. EST. Both will air live on SPEED. Qualifying will be held on Saturday afternoon and air live on SPEED at 2:30 p.m. EST. FOX will provide the live broadcast of Sunday’s race starting with the pre-race show at 2:30 p.m. ET. MRN Radio and SIRIUS NASCAR Radio will provide the live radio broadcast.