BUSCH: Michigan: Kevin Harvick race report

Harvick notches third Busch Pay Day at Michigan BROOKLYN, Mich. (Aug. 16) - Kevin Harvick drove the PayDay Chevrolet to his third Busch Series victory of the year in the Cabela's 250 at the Michigan International Speedway. The win was...

Harvick notches third Busch Pay Day at Michigan

BROOKLYN, Mich. (Aug. 16) - Kevin Harvick drove the PayDay Chevrolet to his third Busch Series victory of the year in the Cabela's 250 at the Michigan International Speedway.

The win was Harvick's 11th career Busch Series win. The race ended 15 laps short of completion due to rain. Harvick's win came via the rain delay and impressive pit strategy by crew chief Butch Hylton.

"We've been playing the fuel mileage game the last few laps," Harvick said after the race. "That's harder than driving around the race track normally because you have to let off. I was letting off going into (turn) one to save fuel. We had to make up about three laps, but it's a good day for the PayDay car."

Harvick qualified the PayDay Chevrolet in the fifth position in what the team termed a disappointing qualifying attempt. The team continued to work hard on the car during the final practice session and prepared a great car for the race.

When the green flag waved on Saturday, Harvick wasted no time moving to front. At the completion of the first lap, Harvick was in third, despite battling a tight-handling car. By lap 25, Harvick slipped back to fifth and continued to fight his tight-handling PayDay Chevrolet. On lap 45, the caution flag waved, and Harvick brought the PayDay Chevrolet down pit road for its first stop of the day. The PayDay team gave the car four tires and fuel and made several chassis adjustments. Harvick returned to the track in the third position.

After the restart on lap 50, Harvick reported to the crew that the car was loose, but much easier to drive than in the previous segment.

While the intense racing action was taking place on track, Hylton and crewmember Chris Chase were figuring fuel mileage scenarios in the PayDay pit box. Hylton developed a plan, and when the caution flag was displayed on lap 64, Hylton brought Harvick down pit road for the winning call of the day.

When the race restarted, Harvick was eighth and wasted no time returning to the front of the field. Harvick took over the lead from a dominant Tony Stewart when Stewart took his machine to pit road for service on lap 101. Harvick went on to lead the next 10 laps, as rain began to fall on the track. NASCAR officials declared the race official, despite being 15 laps shy of completion. Pole-sitter Kasey Kahne finished second, and Bobby Hamilton Jr. was third. The PayDay team remains the top-ranked unit in the team standings, 100 points ahead of the No. 10 team (Scott Riggs).

The series returns to the Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway next week, the site of Harvick's first win of 2003. Harvick will perform "triple-duty" at Bristol. He will drive his No. 6 Victory Junction Gang Chevrolet Aug. 20 in the Craftsman Truck Series race. He will pilot the No. 21 PayDay Chevrolet in the Aug. 22 Busch Series race, and will finish his busy week on Aug. 23 in the Winston Cup race, when he steers his No. 29 GM Goodwrench Chevrolet.

The Food City 250 will air live from the Bristol Motor Speedway on Friday, Aug. 22, at 8 p.m. EDT on the TNT cable network and the PRN radio network.

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Tony Stewart , Kevin Harvick , Bobby Hamilton Jr. , Kasey Kahne