Harvick Is Very Excited To Head To “The Mountains”

Kevin Harvick

Kevin Harvick is heading to the mountains of Pennsylvania with Busch Beer on the hood of his No. 4 Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) for Sunday’s Axalta presents the Pocono 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Race at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway in Long Pond, Pennsylvania.

Busch Beer is the perfect fit for when the NASCAR Cup Series heads north to Pocono Raceway, where drivers and race fans typically expect cool, crisp and refreshing temperatures – much like the taste of Busch Beer.

What makes Pocono more attractive to drivers and race fans is that the region is a popular outdoor recreation area known for fishing, hunting, mountain biking and whitewater rafting in the surrounding mountains and streams when away from the racetrack.

Harvick is looking to make the weekend equally as cool, crisp and refreshing by adding a few firsts to his resume – his first race as a play-by-play announcer in the first-ever all-driver NASCAR Xfinity Series race broadcast during Saturday’s Pocono Green 250 on FOX. He’s also looking to score his first Cup Series win at Pocono Sunday.

FOX was looking for a fresh perspective when the first-of-its-kind broadcast was announced May 18 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway. Harvick will be joined in the broadcast booth by SHR teammate Clint Bowyer and fellow Cup Series driver Joey Logano. Pit road reporters are set to be Erik Jones, Ryan Blaney and Ricky Stenhouse Jr., with Denny Hamlin and SHR teammate Danica Patrick in the Hollywood Hotel mobile studio. No other professional sport in North America is known to have conducted an all-athlete broadcast of an event.

While Saturday will be a refreshing change of pace for the driver, what would be equally refreshing to Harvick would be a win in Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series event. The “Tricky Triangle” is one of only four racetracks where Harvick has yet to record a Cup Series win. Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway and Kentucky Speedway in Sparta are the other three.

The Bakersfield, California, native has run well at Pocono, scoring eight top-five finishes and 13 top-10s in his 32 career Cup Series starts, but has yet to reach victory lane in NASCAR’s top series. He seems to be getting closer, however, as he’s scored three top-five finishes in his last five Cup Series starts at Pocono, including runner-up finishes in August 2014 and June 2015.

In August 2014, Harvick started sixth, led five laps and finished second to Dale Earnhardt Jr. by .228 of a second. In June 2015, he started fifth, led 39 laps and was runner-up to Martin Truex Jr. by 1.346 seconds.

Harvick does have a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory at Pocono, scoring the win from the pole position while driving for his own team on Aug. 7, 2011. He led 44 of 53 laps to beat Kyle Busch to the finish line by 1.140 seconds.

The 2014 NASCAR Cup Series champion would like nothing more than to score his first Cup Series win Sunday at Pocono. A win would be Harvick’s first of the 2017 season and secure his place in NASCAR’s 2017 Playoffs.

KEVIN HARVICK, Driver of the No. 4 Busch Beer Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:
What is most unique about going to Pocono?

“I’m not sure people will know this unless they’ve been to Pocono the last couple years, but Pocono has changed so much in the last three years. For me, my wife and son actually ask to go to Pocono, now, because they like going to the water parks and they like going to the golf course. You drive into the racetrack and it’s like a big party. Those guys have done such a great job up there of kind of turning the atmosphere around and making it a cool environment to go up to. There is a ton to do up there if you go and look for it.”

 

Are you nervous to be the lead announcer for the all-driver Xfinity Series broadcast at Pocono?

“I’m most worried about what (Clint) Bowyer is going to say or do and that it’s going to be on my watch. That’s really my problem. Logano is going to be up there with me but, having Bowyer standing up there, I just hope they have the little beeper button ready – (laughs) – just in case he says something he shouldn’t.”

 

Brian Igdalski and the group at Pocono have done so much to improve the infrastructure and fan experience. What does that mean for the racetrack?

“Well, people see effort. When you go to Pocono, you see effort from the time you turn in to the tunnel and see the waterfall – going through the tunnel to the guardrails all the way to the campgrounds – everything there has been in a transition. You feel like you’re having more fun when you go to Pocono, now, than you did, say, six or seven years ago.”

 

Busch Beer Racing Team Report

Round 14 of 36 – Axalta presents the Pocono 400 – Pocono Raceway

At-Track PR Contact: Ryan Barry, True Speed Communication (704-500-1553, Ryan.Barry@TrueSpeedCommunication.com)
Primary Team Members:

Driver: Kevin Harvick

Hometown: Bakersfield, California

 

Crew Chief: Rodney Childers

Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina

 

Car Chief: Robert Smith

Hometown: Whitewater, Wisconsin

 

Engine Builder: Roush-Yates Engines

Headquarters: Moorseville, North Carolina

 

Engine Specialist: Robert Brandt

Hometown: Mobile, Alabama

 

Spotter: Tim Fedewa

Hometown: Holt, Michigan

Over-The-Wall Crew Members:

Gas Man: Justin White

Hometown: Lynnville, Tennessee

 

Front Tire Changer: Eric Maycroft

Hometown: Algonquiin, Illinois

 

Second Gas Man: Marc Wulf

Hometown: Omaha, Nebraska

 

Front Tire Carrier: Matt Holzbaur

Hometown: New Egypt, New Jersey

 

Windshield: Matthew Custer

Hometown: Bedford, Pennsylvania

 

Rear Tire Changer: Daniel Smith

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina

 

Jackman: Stan Doolittle

Hometown: Ninety Six, South Carolina

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Mike “Shrek” Morneau

Hometown: Oxford, Maine

Road Crew Members:

Truck Drivers: Rick Hodges and Stephen Mitchell

Hometowns: Raleigh, North Carolina, and Woodville, Ohio, respectively

 

Tire Specialist: Dustin Keath

Hometown: Reading, Pennsylvania

 

Shock Specialist: Mike McCarville

Hometown: Kensington, Prince Edward Island, Canada

 

Engineers: Dax Gerringer and Billy Keubler

Hometowns: Gibsonville, North Carolina, and Saline, Michigan,respectively

 

Mechanics: Richie Bean and Allen Mincey

Hometown: Bradford, Vermont, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida,respectively

 

Fuel Runner: Chris Clayton

Hometown: Modesto, California

Chassis Information – Chassis No. 4-1041:
Kevin Harvick will pilot the No. 4 Busch Beer Ford Fusion built on Chassis No. 4-1041 in the Axalta presents the Pocono 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race Sunday at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway. Built new in 2017, Chassis No. 4-1041 is new to the SHR fleet and will make its Cup Series debut Sunday at Pocono.

 

Pocono Raceway Notes of Interest:
· Earning It Since 2014: Harvick is in his 17th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season and his fourth at Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) with crew chief Rodney Childers at the helm. In their first three seasons together, Harvick and Childers combined to produce 12 victories, 11 poles, 54 top-five finishes and 75 top-10s; led 5,815 laps; won the 2014 Cup Series title; finished runner-up in 2015 to champion Kyle Busch and eighth in 2016.

 

· Points Position: Harvick arrives at the Axalta presents the Pocono 400 ranked third in the NASCAR Cup Series standings with 429 points after a ninth-place finish at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. He trails leader Martin Truex Jr. by 116 points.

 

· Leading Laps: Through the first 13 points-paying NASCAR Cup Series events of 2017, Harvick ranks fourth in laps led with 514 of 4,306 total laps contested – nearly 12 percent. Harvick has led at least one lap in eight of the 13 points-paying events of 2017, including at least 10 laps in six of the last seven points-paying events.

 

· Harvick at Pocono in the NASCAR Cup Series: Harvick will make his 33rd NASCAR Cup Series start at Pocono Sunday. Harvick’s best finish at Pocono is second, which he has done twice – first in August 2014 and again in June 2015. Harvick’s Pocono resume shows eight top-five finishes, 13 top-10s and 68 laps led with an average finish of 13.7.

 

· Harvick at Pocono in the Camping World Truck Series: Harvick has two starts at Pocono in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He won from the pole and led 44 of 55 total laps in August 2011 while driving for Kevin Harvick Inc. He also won the pole in 2011 with a speed of 162.684 mph. In 2015, he started seventh and finished second driving the No. 00 Haas Automation Chevrolet for JR Motorsports.

 

· Upcoming Milestone: Harvick sits at 48 second-place finishes in the Cup Series and needs one more to break a tie with Lee Petty and take sole possession of 10th on the all-time Cup Series second-place-finishes list. Harvick also needs 245 laps led to become the 17th Cup Series driver of all-time to lead 11,000 or more laps.

 

· Career NASCAR Cup Series Totals: Harvick has 35 wins, 158 top-fives, 292 top-10s and 20 poles in 587 career Cup Series starts heading into Sunday’s 400-mile event at Pocono.

 

· Harvick the TV Broadcaster: Harvick will serve as the play-by-play announcer in the FOX TV booth for the first-ever all-driver NASCAR Xfinity Series race broadcast Saturday at Pocono Raceway. It will mark his fifth appearance in the booth since the start of the season. He also visited the booth on Feb. 25 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, March 18 at Phoenix International Raceway,April 22 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, May 6 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway, as well as the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event April 1 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway. He also is slated to broadcast the Truck Series races July 21 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Oct. 13 at Talladega.

 

· Harvick’s Happy Hours on SiriusXM Radio: On March 14, Harvick announced that he will hostHappy Hours on SiriusXM Radio. The show debuted March 28 and airs every Tuesday from 7 to 9 p.m. ET, featuring Harvick’s distinctive perspective on his sport and life outside the track. Harvick and co-host Matt Yocum take calls from listeners and give NASCAR fans a unique view on the driver’s life and interests when he is away from the racecar.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

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