Budweiser Racing Team Notes of Interest
Kevin Harvick is scheduled to make his 500th career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) start in Sunday’s AAA Texas 500 race at Texas Motor Speedway (TMS). In the midst of his 14th season in the series, Harvick has earned 26 wins, 111 top fives, 226 top-10 finishes and 14 pole awards. This weekend the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS will feature a special 500th start logo on the hood, under the right taillight and on the base of the b-post in recognition of the milestone. In addition, the hashtag #TexasToast appears on the car’s decklid.
Chase Update… With two races to go in the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship, Harvick is ranked eighth in the standings
Chassis Info… The No. 4 Budweiser team will utilize Chassis No. 884 in Sunday’s race. Harvick has competed in this car three times so far this year: In July, he scored the pole award and finished eighth at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In August, he scored the pole award, led 195 laps and finished 19th after getting caught up in a late-race accident at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Earlier this month, Harvick started seventh, led 162 laps and drove this car to Victory Circle at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Texas Stats... Harvick has 23 previous starts at TMS. He has earned three top fives and 11 top-10 finishes. He also has an average start of 20.3 and an average finish of 13.6 at the 1.5-mile track.
Testing… Harvick and the No. 4 Budweiser team are scheduled to take part in a two-day test at Homestead-Miami Speedway this week in preparation for the season finale at the 1.5-mile track.
Double Duty… In addition to racing the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet on Sunday, Harvick will drive the No. 5 Hunt Brothers Pizza Chevrolet Camaro in NASCAR Nationwide Series competition for JR Motorsports in Saturday’s race. ESPN2 will have live television coverage of the race starting at 3:30 p.m. ET while PRN affiliates and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio provide the radio broadcast.
Loop Data... Harvick holds several impressive marks in NASCAR’s Loop Data scoring system at TMS heading into this weekend's event, including: second in closers (32 positions gained); third in green flag passes (1,461 passes); and ninth in quality passes (685 passes).
A Look Back… During last year’s AAA Texas 500, Harvick started 19th and finished eighth. In the spring event at TMS, Harvick started third and led one lap before the car’s engine expired on lap 28. The team was credited with a 42nd-place finish as a result.
Harvick on Racing at Texas Motor Speedway
How important is qualifying and track position at a place like Texas Motor Speedway?
“Qualifying is definitely very important on the mile-and-a-half race tracks. Texas is one of those places where track position is so important to keep the handling on your car. There is never a dull moment because you're trying to drive the car to the edge every lap. You're trying to make the car go as fast as you can. When you're in traffic, it's harder to drive the car than it is when you're out there by yourself for the fact that it takes downforce off of the car and it feels like the car is lifting out of the race track. It's definitely a challenge every lap.”
Where does Texas Motor Speedway rank for you?
“Well, it ranks pretty high right now, just for the fact that I’ve never been to Victory Lane on the Cup side. I’ve won a ton of races there in the Nationwide and Truck series as a driver and an owner. We had a really, really fast car there in the spring and had a crazy, freak motor problem. Our mile-and-a-half stuff has really been our bread and butter this year, so I’m looking forward to getting back there and trying to get to Victory Lane. That would really be the best spot to end up.”