|Harvick is using winning Darlington chassis; he's at 6/1 odds to win|
Chase Update… NASCAR’s Challenger Round – the first of the four rounds that make up the 2014 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship – comes to an end this weekend at Dover. Harvick sits third in the driver point standings, seven points behind leader Brad Keselowski. He is 41 points ahead of the cut-off mark for making the Contender Round, which includes races at Kansas Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway.
Chassis Info…The No. 4 Budweiser team will utilize chassis No. 843 in Sunday’s race. Harvick raced this car at Darlington Raceway in April where he led 238 laps en route to his first victory at “The Lady in Black.” The team also utilized this car to record finishes of 41st at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March, and 14th at Pocono Raceway in June.
Dover Stats… Harvick has 27 NSCS starts at Dover. He has three top fives and 12 top-10 finishes, and has an average start of 19.0 and average finish of 15.3.
A Look Back… During last year’s race at Dover International Speedway, Harvick started 12th and finished sixth. In the June race at the track, Harvick started eighth and was leading the race when his right-front tire went flat, forcing the team to make an unscheduled, green-flag pit stop. Harvick ended up finishing 17th, one lap down to the field as a result.
Harvick on racing at Dover International Speedway and the Chase
How key was it for your team to start the Chase with two solid finishes?
“It was important to knock off top fives in the first two races and have a huge cushion going into Dover and be able to race like we need to race there. There’s so much that can happen at Dover — you can be pitting under green and get two laps down with a caution and your day will be over with.”
Take us on a lap around Dover.
“For me, Dover is one of those tracks where you feel the speed the most. You carry a lot of speed through the corners and as you go from the straightaways the elevation change as you go down in the corners is pretty drastic and then you’re right back in the throttle and it kind of throws you back out of that hole and up the hill on the exit of the corner. Laps seem to happen very fast there and you want to try and have the best handling race car you can have there, because if you’re off even a little bit you’ll go multiple laps down in a hurry. It’s a fun, very fast race track that’s really hard to get everything right.”
Talk a little bit about the physical demands on a driver at Dover. You always hear about how intense a lap around the track is, but 400 laps around there must really be taxing on a driver?
“Dover is definitely one of the most taxing places that we go to for sure. There are just a lot of g-forces as you go off into the corner and it kind of throws you down into a hole. There’s a lot of banking with a lot of speed and it’s hard on your body. I usually leave out of there with sore heels from where my feet have beat on the floorboard through the day. It’s definitely a very taxing race track for a driver.”
- Elevation Group of Companies for Budweiser Racing