Kevin Harvick No. 4 Busch Beer Chevrolet Event Preview: Daytona
NASCAR Cup Series
Busch Beer Is Back at Daytona
KANNAPOLIS, North Carolina (June 29, 2016) – Kevin Harvick kicked off the 2016 season with Busch Beer as the primary sponsor of the No. 4 Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) in the season-opening Sprint Unlimited at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. This weekend, he is bringing Busch Beer back to Daytona for Saturday night’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Coke Zero 400 powered by Coca-Cola to conclude the first half of the 36-race Sprint Cup schedule.
The driver of the No. 4 Busch Beer Chevrolet SS has earned his way to the front of the Sprint Cup standings with performance and consistency.
According to NASCAR Statistics, Harvick leads the Sprint Cup Series with a 7.1 average finish, a 112.5 driver rating, 582 times recording the fastest lap, 4,401 laps in the top-15, and 4,733 laps on the lead lap.
Harvick also ranks second with 19 bonus points, seven top-five finishes, 13 top-10s, 700 laps led and 889.2 miles led.
The Sprint Cup points leader is virtually locked into the 16-driver Chase for the Sprint Cup playoff field with his win at Phoenix International Raceway in March and his large points cushion, but this weekend he will focus on returning to victory lane at Daytona.
The 2014 Sprint Cup champion knows his way to victory lane at the 2.5-mile superspeedway. He won the Coke Zero 400 in July 2010, when he started from the pole position, led 28 laps and beat Kasey Kahne to the finish line by 0.092 of a second.
He won the famed Harley J. Earl trophy in 2007 when he beat NACSAR Hall of Fame driver Mark Martin to the Daytona 500 finish line by .020 of a second on the final green-white-checkered restart. It was the closest Daytona 500 finish since the start of computerized scoring in 2003.
Harvick also has three wins in the Sprint Unlimited – 2009, 2010 and 2013 – tying him for second-most with owner and teammate Tony Stewart and NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Jarrett.
Harvick has earned his way to the top of the standings all season long with performance and consistency, and he would love to continue that momentum by kicking off the month of July with a trip to victory lane at Daytona with Busch Beer on the hood of the No. 4 Chevrolet.
KEVIN HARVICK, Driver of the No. 4 Busch Beer Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing:
What makes racing under the lights at Daytona in July so special?
“The July race at Daytona is special for a lot of reasons. I think when you look at the night race at Daytona, it kind of marks the halfway point of the year and you know that you’re going to Daytona. It’s not the Daytona 500, but it’s still Daytona, and everybody wants to win a race at Daytona no matter what it’s in or what it’s for. Daytona just has that special place in our sport and everybody wants to win there.”
Give three adjectives to describe restrictor-plate racing?
“Plate racing is always intense, crazy and I don’t think this goes into the adjective category, but there is always a sense of unknown, I guess you could say, when you talk about plate racing.”
Describe the intensity of plate racing?
“Plate racing is something that you have to be aggressive at just for the fact that if you’re not aggressive, it always seems like you’re not going to be where you need to be. Nine times out of 10, I believe that the aggressor is going to be the guy who comes out on the good side of things just for the fact that you’re making things happen and you’re not waiting for something else to happen. When you wait for something else to happen, that’s usually when you get in trouble because it’s usually someone else’s mess. You can still get in trouble if you’re aggressive, but it seems like with this rules package and the way things are, it’s best to stay aggressive and try to stay up front.”
Chassis Information - Chassis No. 972: Kevin Harvick will pilot the No. 4 Busch Beer Chevrolet SS built on Chassis No. 4-972 in the Coke Zero 400 powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race Saturday at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. Built in 2016, Chassis No. 4-972 will make its Sprint Cup debut Saturday night. It served as a backup in February for Speedweeks at Daytona and in May at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway.
Daytona Notes of Interest:
- Earning It Since 2014: Harvick is in his 16th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season and his third at Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) with crew chief Rodney Childers at the helm. In their first two seasons together, Harvick and Childers combined to produce eight victories, nine poles, 37 top-five finishes and 48 top-10s; led 4,431 laps; won the 2014 Sprint Cup title; and finished runner-up in 2015 to champion Kyle Busch.
- 2016 Race Winner: Harvick is one of 11 Sprint Cup winners through the first 16 races of 2016. He scored his lone win of the season March 13 at Phoenix International Raceway in one of the closest finishes in series history, when he beat runner-up Carl Edwards to the finish line by .01 of a second. The win should secure Harvick a spot in the 2016 Chase for the Sprint Cup playoffs.
- Points Position: Harvick scored a sixth-place finish at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway in the most recent Sprint Cup race Sunday to extend his lead in the driver standings. He now leads second-place driver and SHR teammate Kurt Busch by 35 points heading into the Coke Zero 400 powered by Coca-Cola.
- First or Second: Since joining SHR at the beginning of 2014, Harvick and Childers have teamed to score 31 top-two finishes, including nine wins and 22 runner-up efforts, in 88 total races. The pairing has finished either first or second in nearly 35 percent of the Sprint Cup races since the start of 2014.
- 2016 Loop Leader: According to NASCAR Stats and Information, Harvick leads all Sprint Cup drivers in 2016 in points (562), driver rating (112.5), average finish (7.1), average running position (7.185), fastest laps run (582), percentage of fastest laps run (14.9), laps run on the lead lap (4,733), percentage of laps run on the lead lap (99.14), laps in the top-15 (4,401) and percentage of laps in the top-15 (92.2). He ranks second in bonus points (19), top-five finishes (seven), top-10 finishes (13), laps completed (4,773), laps led (700), percentage of laps led (14.7) and miles led (889.2). He ranks third in quality passes (1,148).
- 9,000 Laps Led and Counting: Harvick led 139 laps in the Good Sam 500k at Phoenix to surpass 9,000 laps led for his Sprint Cup career. He is one of only five active Sprint Cup drivers to lead more than 9,000 laps. The others are Jimmie Johnson, Tony Stewart, Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth. After leading three laps at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway last weekend, Harvick now sits at 9,557 laps led for his Sprint Cup career.
- Leading Laps: Harvick has led 700 laps through the first 16 points-paying races of 2016. The Daytona 500 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, Go Bowling 400 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway, and the FireKeepers Casino 400 at Michigan are the four points-paying races of 2016 in which Harvick did not lead at least one lap.
- 2007 Daytona 500 Champion: Harvick won the 2007 Daytona 500 when he beat Mark Martin to the finish line by .020 of a second on the final green-white-checkered restart. It was the closest Daytona 500 finish since the start of computerized scoring in 2003.
- Wins at Daytona: In addition to his three wins in the Sprint Unlimited, Harvick has four other victories at the famed 2.5-mile racetrack – two Sprint Cup points-paying races (February 2007, July 2010), a non-points event (2013 Budweiser Duel) and a win in the NASCAR Nationwide Series (February 2007).
- Harvick in the Sprint Cup Series at Daytona: The Coke Zero 400 will mark Harvick’s 30th career points-paying Sprint Cup start at Daytona. Harvick has two wins, nine top-five finishes and 14 top-10s there. The 2014 Sprint Cup champion has led 178 laps, has an average starting position of 16.6 and average finish of 15.4, and has completed 91 percent (4,786 of 5,262) of the laps he’s contested at Daytona.
- Harvick in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Daytona: Harvick has 19 career starts in the Xfinity Series at Daytona. He has one win, three poles, 12 top-five finishes and 14 top-10s. He has led 230 laps, has an average starting position of 8.8 and average finish of 7.6, and has completed 99.2 percent (2,102 of 2,119) of the laps he’s contested there.
- Harvick in the Rolex 24 at Daytona: Harvick drove the No. 90 Flis Motorsports Chevrolet Corvette in the American GT class of the 2002 Rolex 24 at Daytona. The four-man team consisted of Harvick, Dave Liniger, Rick Carelli and John Metcalf. The team finished eighth in class after mechanical issue forced the car’s retirement after completing 123 of 716 laps.
- Harvick in the IROC Series at Daytona: Harvick, the 2002 IROC champion, made three starts at Daytona in the series with a best finish of seventh in 2003 and 2004.
- Career Totals: Harvick has 32 wins, 144 top-five finishes, 270 top-10s and 15 poles in 554 career Sprint Cup starts heading into Saturday night’s Coke Zero 400.
- SHR at Daytona: In 42 overall starts at Daytona, SHR-prepared Chevrolets have earned two wins (Tony Stewart in July 2009 and 2012), two poles (Tony Stewart in July 2009 and Danica Patrick in February 2013), 10 top-five finishes and 15 top-10s, have been atop the leaderboard for 260 laps, and have completed 93.0 percent of the laps contested (6,915 of 7,439).
- SHR in 2016: Sixteen races into the 2016 season, SHR’s four Sprint Cup entries have recorded three wins (Harvick at Phoenix, Busch at Pocono, Stewart at Sonoma), two poles (Busch at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway), 13 top-five finishes and 31 top-10s. SHR Chevrolets have completed 18,809 of 19,092 laps contested and collectively have led 963 laps.
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