Harvick fastest in Talladega Happy Hour

Kevin Harvick piloting the No. 29 RCR Chevy posted the fastest time during final practice for the Nextel Cup teams. Harvick's lap of 195.174 mph bested second place Dave Blaney by 0.101 seconds. In six starts, Harvick has two top-ten ...

Kevin Harvick piloting the No. 29 RCR Chevy posted the fastest time during final practice for the Nextel Cup teams. Harvick's lap of 195.174 mph bested second place Dave Blaney by 0.101 seconds.

In six starts, Harvick has two top-ten finishes.

"We're thinking that we've got a great chance to win," said Harvick. "You know you have to miss the big wreck and that's probably the biggest thing going in. You know you have a fifty-fifty chance of being in the right spot. If you can have a good car and keep yourself in position at the front of the pack, then usually you can miss that wreck. But sometimes, that's the start of the wreck. In the last couple of years, Talladega and Daytona have been good racetracks for us."

Rookies set the pace at the front of the pack, with Brian Vickers, Scott Wimmer ad Brendan Gaughan completing the top five fastest times.

"It's like sitting on pins and needles when you go to restrictor plate races," said Wimmer. "You can have a really good car and get taken out in someone else's wreck. I think the worst thing about it is you don't control your own destiny. If you can go down there and run well, stay out if trouble and get into the lead draft, your chances of having a good finish are tremendously better. Our hope is to come out of there with a top 10 finish."

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. couldn't get any play during final practice, as drafting partner Michael Waltrip decided to sit out the session. Earnhardt posted only the 32nd fastest time, after running seventh quickest during morning practice.

Notably, Elliott Sadler, who looked so strong in both of Saturday's practice sessions, and qualified 12th for the event, lost an engine and will have to drop to the rear of the pack.

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Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Michael Waltrip , Kevin Harvick , Brendan Gaughan , Brian Vickers , Elliott Sadler , Dave Blaney