Watkins Glen: Kevin Harvick preview

Harvick to Make 200th Career Cup Series Start at The Glen HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (August 8, 2006) -- GM Goodwrench driver Kevin Harvick is set to make his 200th career NASCAR Cup Series start this Sunday, August 13th, during the running of the AMD...

Harvick to Make 200th Career Cup Series Start at The Glen

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (August 8, 2006) -- GM Goodwrench driver Kevin Harvick is set to make his 200th career NASCAR Cup Series start this Sunday, August 13th, during the running of the AMD at The Glen. Among the active drivers to reach this feat, Harvick will be the 26th driver to do so, behind Kurt Busch who has 204 career Cup Series starts. The Bakersfield, Calif., native was thrust into Cup Series stardom in 2001 after being called on to fulfill the seat of the late Dale Earnhardt. He went on to take the motorsports world by storm, capturing the Cup Series rookie-of-the-year honors and Busch Series Championship all in that same year. Since then Harvick has compiled a record of six wins, four pole positions, 39 top-five and 78 top-10 finishes and winnings totaling $28,693,986.

"I can't believe this will be my 200th start in the Cup Series," said Harvick. "I remember my first Cup race like it was yesterday. We have had some success in the Cup Series over the last few years, and I hope we can add to that in the next 200 races."

With the resurgence of Richard Childress Racing, Harvick heads to Watkins Glen this weekend as undoubtedly one of the hottest drivers on the circuit. He has a commanding lead on the Busch Series competition, with a series leading five wins, and is coming off his fourth top-five Cup Series finish in a row. That has him sitting fourth in points with five races to go before the Chase for the NEXTEL Cup begins. If you ask Harvick, he sure is "Happy" to have The Glen next on the schedule. He knows though a lot can happen in the remaining five races before the Chase begins.

"I have always enjoyed racing at Watkins Glen," said Harvick, who has completed every lap in his five Cup Series starts. "We've ran really well there and always seem to run well on the road courses for whatever reason. Every once in a while we run across some issues, but all-in-all we run really well at both road courses that are on the schedule. Watkins Glen has been really good to us, so hopefully we can continue that this year. It is a very fast road course and one of the few where most of your corners turn to the right. You don't shift as much as you do at Infineon Raceway, but it is just as mentally and physically challenging. As long as we can keep our mistakes to a minimum and continue to race hard week-in and week-out, we will be fine."

Points of Interest...

A Racing Milestone...Kevin Harvick will make his 200th career NASCAR Cup Series start this weekend during the running of the AMD at The Glen on Sunday, August 13th. Among active drivers to reach this feat, Harvick will be the 26th driver to do so behind Kurt Busch who has 204 career NASCAR Cup Series starts. Harvick's Cup career to date encompasses rookie-of-the-year honors, and six wins, four pole positions, 39 top-five and 78 top-10 finishes and winnings totaling $28,693,986.

Avg. Start/Avg. Finish...Kevin Harvick's average starting position at Watkins Glen International is 9.8, with his best start of sixth coming in 2002 (went on to finish 14th). He qualified 13th at the 2.45-mile road course last year. Harvick's average finishing position is 9.4, with his best finish of fifth coming in 2003.

#29 Goodwrench Expertise Challenge...29 lucky fans will receive an all-new 2007 Chevy Avalanche if GM Goodwrench driver Kevin Harvick wins 2 of 12 selected NASCAR Nextel Cup races. GM Godwrench will also set up a $200,000 scholarship fund to encourage young men and women to pursue careers as automotive technicians after the two wins occur. Fans can join the challenge by visiting a Chevrolet dealership or a Chevy display at select NASCAR events to get a ticket with an official promotion code. They then visit goodwrench.com/expert, enter the promotion code and submit the registration form to receive a sweepstakes entry. They can also visit goodwrench.com/expert to get a promotion code and complete the registration process. The next Expertise Challenge race will be at Michigan International Speedway on August 20th.

Victory Lane Savings Promotion...GM Goodwrench driver Kevin Harvick gave all GM customers and NASCAR fans their first chance to cash in on a $10 rebate when he won the Subway Fresh 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday, April 22, 2006. Throughout the remainder of the 2006 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series season, anytime the No. 29 GM Goodwrench/Reese's Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS is first past the checkers, the first 5,000 people who visit goodwrench.com starting at 3 a.m. EDT the Monday after the win can celebrate with a $10 mail-in rebate.

No. 29 GM Goodwrench driver Kevin Harvick on Watkins Glen International...

Are brakes the most important part of the car?

"Brakes are a huge part of it, along with getting your car to turn and getting up off the corners. The brakes are tortured because you are carrying so much speed down off the straight-aways into the corners. Going into turn one, it's like a 90-degree corner and you are hauling the mail. Down the back straight-away, you go into the inter-loop and pretty much have to stop right there."

What's the biggest difference between ovals and road courses besides the obvious layout of the two?

"There's a lot more to do on road courses. You have to shift, stop, shift, gas it and slide. The hardest handling characteristic is to get your car to get forward bite up off the corner because you are coming off a low gear and there are a lot of hills and off-camber corners. You have to try and hook your car up the best you can. It's kind of like trying to find a balance between taking care of your stuff and driving the heck out of it. It's definitely different from our weekly routine."

Are there any similarities to Watkins Glen and the other two road courses you have raced on already this year, Infineon Raceway and the road course in Mexico?

"They are so different. Sears Point and the road course in Mexico are real slow and technical race tracks. Watkins Glen is really, really fast with a lot of sweeping corners, so it is definitely a different style and breed of road course racing. You will see different guys running up front with all the Cup guys in the race, so it will be a lot different than Mexico. They are two totally different animals."

-credit: rcr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Kevin Harvick , Kurt Busch
Teams Richard Childress Racing