Kevin Harvick essentially told his fellow Monster Energy NASCAR Cup season dominator Kyle Busch – I’ll take your three race victories and raise you one. And after taking his fourth win last week at Dover, Harvick can expect that Busch will be ready to try and match the effort this weekend at Kansas Speedway.
Harvick and Busch have won seven of the season’s first 11 races and the two former Cup champions have another four runner-up finishes between them too, dominating the 2018 season start in a way like no other in recent memory.
This week’s KC Masterpiece 400 at Kansas Speedway presents an exceptionally good challenge for both Harvick and Busch, however, judging by their historical work on the 1.5-miler.
Harvick has a pair of wins (2013 and 2016) and has won three pole positions (2013-14) and is ranked second-best in terms of overall driver rating (106.4). Busch won at Kansas in 2016 – his 17th try. And while his average finish at the track is uncharacteristic 17.1 – he has vastly improved that number with five top-fives in the last six races.
Last year Martin Truex Jr. swept both Kansas race victories en route to the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship.
“Before three years ago, I’ve not had many opportunities to win at Kansas and hopefully we can get into Victory Lane there again this weekend with our M&Ms Carmel Toyota,’’ Busch said. “As you’ve seen so far this year, there are certain circumstances that can go against you and you just have to persevere and keep fighting until the checkered flag falls. We’ve won some races even though we hadn’t had the dominant car in a few of those.’’
“I think we’re pretty equal, honestly,’’ Busch said. “I think I’ve got to give them the notch a little bit. I think they’re a little bit better than we are.
“… A lot of it all comes down to execution when things are this tight with the 4 (Harvick) and us. They were able to execute better at the start of the year on their streak and also last week And we’ve been able to execute in order to get our wins.
“We haven’t been dominant each week, but we’ve been able to execute as a team – myself as a driver – to be able to get those wins.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!