Kevin Harvick and the No. 29 Team Infineon Advance

Pre-Race Reports | NASCAR Cup Series | 06/22/11

No. 29 Rheem Tankless Chevrolet
Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway

Budweiser Racing Team Notes of Interest

·      Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet , returns to his home state this weekend for the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. A Bakersfield, Calif., native, Harvick grew up a little more than 300 miles southeast of Sonoma, and his racing career began shortly after receiving a go-kart for his kindergarten graduation.

·      Harvick will be available to members of the media in the Infineon Raceway media center at 11:15 a.m. on Friday, June 24.

·      The No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet team will race chassis No. 357 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable. This is a brand new race car that will see its first on-track action this weekend at Infineon Raceway.

In 10 starts at Infineon Raceway, Harvick has earned three top-five finishes. He’s led a total of five laps and has an average starting position of 14.8 and an average finishing position of 16.8. Harvick has also completed all but one lap, or 99.9 percent (1,106 of 1,107) of the laps run at Infineon in the Sprint Cup Series since 2001.
Harvick and RCR’s No. 29 team started last year’s race at Infineon Raceway from the fourth position and took home a third-place finish.
Harvick holds a number of impressive loop data statistics at the 1.99-mile road course: seventh in average running position, seventh in fastest on restarts, seventh in laps in the top-15 (412), ninth in fastest laps run (20), 10th in green-flag passes (299) and 10th in driver fastest early in a run.
This week in Budweiser Racing history: Kasey Kahne led 37 laps in the No. 9 Budweiser entry en route to Victory Lane at Infineon Raceway in 2009. He started the race from the fifth position and took the checkered flag with a 0.748-second lead over Tony Stewart.
For the online version of the Budweiser Racing media guide, please visit
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 Infineon Raceway:

In the past three years at Infineon, there have been three veteran drivers who won their first career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series road race. Are more drivers preparing harder now than in the past to compete on road courses? “Everybody has prepared for it as long as I’ve been around. I know if you don’t prepare for it right you’re not going to be competitive and I think everybody knows that. I think the guys that weren’t as good at it in the first few years have gotten better at it because they’ve spent more time preparing for it. We’ve pretty much had the same preparation every year that we’ve ever road raced and road course races have been good for us.”

With so many turns and so few easy places to pass at Infineon, the race typically has lots of bumping and contact, similar to a short-track race only with twists. Do you just prepare yourself for that kind of race, along with the probability of some angry drivers? “There’s really no where good to pass. That’s the problem. That’s why it becomes so rough, because (the track’s) so narrow and the small amount of areas where there are decent passing zones lead into really, really slow corners and that’s why you see as much contact as you do. It is way more like a short-track race than anywhere else and probably as rough a race as you’ll see anywhere on the circuit.”

What do you like most about road-course racing in general and specifically at Infineon? It appears to demand a lot from drivers, physically and mentally. “The Infineon course is tough because it’s narrow and very technical. Track position is probably the biggest key, so you have to be technically sound and mentally sound and do everything right just to stay on the race track and try to put yourself in position at the end of the race. It’s a challenging course, but very narrow.”

What are the keys to winning at Infineon? “The whole key is just getting the right track position at the end of the race. You have to fight all day to put yourself in position to be in those top couple of spots as the race comes down to the end. Sometimes it comes down to fuel mileage and sometimes it comes down to having the best handling car, but in the end track position will be key.”

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