No. 29 Okuma Chevrolet
5-Hour Energy 500 at Pocono Raceway
Budweiser Racing Team Notes of Interest
• The No. 29 Chevrolet will sport the Okuma logos this weekend at Pocono, marking the first time Okuma has been the primary sponsor of an RCR car in Sprint Cup competition. Okuma is a world leader in the development of computer numeric controls (CNC) and machining technology and the sponsorship of the No. 29 is part of the extension of the RCR/Okuma partnership through 2017.
• The No. 29 Okuma Chevrolet team will race chassis No. 288 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable. The team utilized this race car eight times in 2010, earning three top-five and six top-10 finishes. The top-five runs included second-place finishes at Auto Club Speedway (2/21) and Indianapolis Motor Speedway (7/25), and Harvick’s win at Michigan International Speedway (8/15).
• In 20 starts at Pocono Raceway, Harvick has earned four top-five and seven top-10 finishes. He’s led five laps, has an average starting position of 19.6 and an average finishing position of 14.5. Harvick has also completed 95.4 percent (3,710 of 3,889) of the laps run at Pocono.
• Harvick and RCR’s No. 29 team scored fourth-place finishes in both races at Pocono Raceway in 2010. In the first race last year Harvick started 22nd, led five laps and ended up fourth. In the second race at Pocono he scored his fourth-place finish after starting 14th.
• Harvick owns several notable loop data statistics at Pocono as he enters this weekend’s race: third in green-flag passes (965), fifth in closers, seventh in quality passes (491) and seventh in speed in traffic.
• Adult race fans can log onto Budweiser’s Facebook page to enter Budweiser’s “52 Weeks to Win” promotion. The program is a series of weekly sweepstakes hosted on Budweiser’s Facebook page throughout 2011 offering adult beer drinkers the opportunity to win unique prizes, including tickets to sporting events and concerts, seasonal gift packages and VIP experiences. Official rules are available on the Budweiser Facebook page.
• For the online version of the Budweiser Racing media guide, please visit http://www.budracingmedia.com.
• 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.
Kevin Harvick discusses Pocono Raceway:
Talk about Pocono. “I enjoy driving the track. It’s fun to try to get your car set up right because the corners are so different and there are some bumps and things that give the race track character.”
Pocono was a pretty solid track for you last season. “This part of the season over the past several years has been really good. Pocono’s a fun race track to race on. The past couple of years, it’s come down to strategy and we’ve been solid. It’s got that unique patch in turn 3 that seemed to kind of lose some grip last year, so hopefully that’s gone and it’ll be kind of even from top to bottom as far as which groove you choose. It’s a fun track, and really rough in Turn 1 on the bottom. A lot of times you run through the middle. If your car’s working really good you can run anywhere you want through Turn 1. The tunnel turn is a really fast corner that you run right at the bottom. It’s got a really big curve at the bottom that you really don’t want to hit at all, because it jumps you up in the air. It’s a challenging race track, and has three totally different turns.”
Some drivers say the “tunnel turn” at Pocono is one of the most difficult turns in all of NASCAR. Do you agree? “It’s a very challenging corner. It’s very inviting to drive the car in too far and then you push up in the center of the corner. When you get it right, it’s a really, really fun corner to go through because it’s really fast and the car’s right on the edge getting into the corner and you’re in the gas really early on exit. The car just kind of has that loose swing as you come up off the corner and you’re right up against the wall. It’s really flat. There’s a little bump in the middle of it that you hit. It’s really fun when your car is right. If it’s not right, you lose a lot of time there.”