Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Kevin Harvick on Watkins Glen key: 'you can gain the most time in the braking zones'

Kevin Harvick is 8/1 to win Sunday's Cheez-it 355
Kevin Harvick and the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS team travel to Watkins Glen International (WGI) this weekend to compete in the Cheez-It 355 at The Glen NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS).

Meet Harvick… Race fans in the Watkins Glen, New York, area can meet Harvick on Thursday, August 7. He will be at the Walmart Supercenter located at 515 East 4th Street, from 4 – 6 p.m. ET. Fans can contact the store for additional details, including wristband distribution for the appearance.

Locked In… After scoring a second-place finish in last weekend’s event at Pocono Raceway, Harvick clinched a spot in the 2014 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship. He is one of seven drivers who have secured their spot with five races to go before the Chase field is finalized.

Chassis Info…The No. 4 team will utilize Chassis No. 873 in Sunday’s race. Harvick raced this car at Sonoma Raceway in June where he started sixth, led nine laps and finished 20th after getting caught up in a late-race accident.

Watkins Glen Stats… Harvick has 13 NSCS starts at WGI. He has earned one win (2006), two five top fives and six top-10 finishes, and has an average start of 14.2 and average finish of 13.1.

Loop Data… Harvick owns several impressive marks in NASCAR’s Loop Data scoring system at WGI heading into this weekend’s event, including: seventh in green flag passes (390); seventh in laps in top 15 (480); seventh in speed in traffic (117.749 mph); and eighth in laps led (36).

A Look Back… During last year’s race at WGI, Harvick started 26th, led eight laps and finished 13th.

Track Your Bud… Anheuser-Busch’s Baldwinsville, New York, brewery is located 90 miles northeast of WGI. The 1.5-million square foot brewery opened in 1983 and is situated on 370.43 acres. In addition to the company’s flagship brands, Budweiser and Bud Light, the brewery also produces more than 65 products accounting for nearly 180 truck shipments per day. Beer drinkers can learn more about the Anheuser-Busch’s 12 breweries by downloading the Track Your Bud mobile app or visiting and entering the Born On Date found on bottles and cans of Budweiser.

Salute… Now through August 15, beer drinkers can enter a code contained inside specially marked packages of Budweiser on to trigger a $1 donation to Folds of Honor, accounting for up to $1 million combined with wholesaler contributions for a more than $3 million total donation to Folds of Honor in 2014. Through scholarships and other assistance, Folds of Honor gives back to the families of soldiers killed or disabled in service to our country. Since first partnering with Folds of Honor Foundation in 2010, Budweiser and its wholesalers have raised nearly $10 million for military families, accounting for thousands of scholarships across the country.

Harvick on Racing at Watkins Glen International

What is the key to having a good race at Watkins Glen International?
“Watkins Glen is really fast, so the biggest thing there is to get your car good under braking so you can make passes during the race. Usually where you can gain the most time is in the braking zones.”

What sections or turns are the most challenging at Watkins Glen International? 
“It just depends on how your car is handling. I think they can all present problems. As the race goes on Turn 1 becomes more of an issue because it’s downhill and the brakes start to get worn out. The wheel hop becomes easier to start happening as the race goes on. That is the one you have got to watch for me during the race, but they all present different challenges.”

Are the road courses still odd-ball races or do they seem like just another race now? 
“They are pretty much just another race now. I think everybody knows that you are going to a road course and you’ve got a lot of different aspects from a driver’s standpoint and the team standpoint that you have to pay attention to.”

How does Watkins Glen International differ compared to Sonoma Raceway?
“There is a lot of speed difference. At Watkins Glen (International) you go from Turn 1, up through the esses and into the inner loop and end up running about 170-180 miles per hour down the backstretch. At Sonoma (Raceway) you’re lucky to get above 100 miles per hour, so speed is definitely the biggest difference.”

With you guys being secured in the Chase now, what’s your mindset for the next handful of races?
“I don’t think that’s really changed. I think that it’s just trying to get yourself ready for the last 10 weeks, to know that you’re not going to win every race, you’re going to have days like today where you have to scramble, you’re going to have practices where your car is off, you’re going to have things that are going to go wrong. On the days when things are right, you need to capitalize on them and win the race.”

- Elevation Group of Companies for Budweiser Racing

No comments: