Harvick Looks To Clinch Busch Title At Rockingham Kevin Harvick has an opportunity to clinch the NASCAR Busch Series title this weekend at Rockingham during the Sam's Town 200. It would be a remarkable feat considering he is attempting to run...
Harvick Looks To Clinch Busch Title At Rockingham
Kevin Harvick has an opportunity to clinch the NASCAR Busch Series title this weekend at Rockingham during the Sam's Town 200. It would be a remarkable feat considering he is attempting to run full seasons in both Busch and Winston Cup, the first driver in history to do so. Logistically, qualifying and starting every race is in a challenge itself.
Second to Harvick in points is defending champion Jeff Green, who sits 198 points behind last year's Busch Series Rookie of the Year. In a nutshell, if Harvick is leading the Busch Series points standings by 186 points as the teams leave Rockingham, he clinches the title regardless of how he finishes the final race of the season at Homestead on November 10th.
Harvick essentially has a 12-point cushion over Green in order to clinch the title. Here are some hypothetical situations:
1) If Green were to win the race and lead the most laps, he would receive 185 points. Harvick would then have to finish second and lead at least one lap to clinch the title (175 points).
2) If Green were to finish fifth without leading at least one lap, he would record a point total of 155. Harvick would then have to finish seventh or better to clinch the championship (146 points).
3) If Green were to finish 10th without leading at least one lap, Harvick would then have to finish 13th or better.
4) If Green were to finish 15th without leading at least one lap, Harvick would then have to finish 19th or better.
Harvick and the ACDelco team will have to keep an eye on third place Jason Keller who is 225 points behind the leader. Keller could get back into the mix if both Harvick and Green have poor runs. He is just 27 points behind Green.
"We're approaching Rockingham like we have every other racetrack this season," Harvick said. "We're going to stay with what got us here and that's aggressive racing. I'm not saying that I'm going to put myself in bad situations on the racetrack, but we think we can go out and contend for the win. If we don't get the win, hopefully we can get a top five and wrap up the championship."
RCR BECOMES FIRST EVER RACE TEAM TO...If Harvick were to clinch the title for RCR this weekend, Richard Childress Racing would enter the record books yet again. With a Busch title, RCR would become the first race team in the history of NASCAR to win at least one championship in each of NASCAR's three major series, Winston Cup (Dale Earnhardt, 1986, 87, 90, 91, 93, & 94), the Busch Series and the Truck Series (Mike Skinner 1995).
"It would mean a lot to me," Harvick said, "to help give Richard his first Busch Championship. We've only been involved in it two years, but it would be an honor for me because Richard has done more for me than just about anybody else in racing."
"Well it isn't over yet. But, I'd say we're on our way to accomplishing our goals for this season. We set out to finish in the top 10 in Winston Cup points, win the Rookie of the Year and the Busch championship. If all goes well at Rockingham we could clinch the championship and if we finish strong we'll get the other two. We've won two races in Cup, which surprised a lot of people, and we won five races in Busch. I think we surprised a lot of people, including ourselves, in being able to run a full schedule in both (Series). Bad luck with weather and we weren't going to be able to pull it off. I think the season is a success for that alone."
LONG WAY FROM ROCKINGHAM '00-Harvick did not qualify for the Rockingham Busch race in February of 2000. It was just the second race of the season, but he came back the next week to qualify for Las Vegas and finish 13th. Not making the race in Rockingham was a hit to Harvick's confidence, but he came back strong from that experience and finished 10th in October of last year at Rockingham.
"I wasn't sure what was going to happen," Harvick said. "We were a new team. We still didn't have all of our cars built. And then we didn't make the race. I wasn't sure if I would be around for that long. But we turned it around and finished third in points. It was a learning experience for us as a team and me as a driver."
FIRST WINSTON CUP START- the No. 29 GM Goodwrench Service Plus Chevrolet was introduced at Rockingham this past February. Harvick qualified the car and drove onto an impressive 14th place finish in his first ever start in a Winston Cup car.
OTHER CHAMPIONSHIP CHASES AT ROCKINGHAM-Harvick will be looking to duplicate another RCR championship moment at Rockingham when he tries to seal up the Busch Championship. Dale Earnhardt wrapped up his final Winston Cup championship at Rockingham in 1994 by winning the October race. <pre> HARVICK'S Rockingham WINSTON CUP STATS Date Start Finish Laps Laps Led Status Money Points 2/25/01 36th 14th 392/393 0 Running $84,887 121
HARVICK'S Rockingham BUSCH SERIES STATS Date Start Finish Laps Laps Led Status Money Points 2/24/01 22nd 2nd 197/197 0 Running $24,875 170 2/21/00 22nd 10th 197/197 0 Running $15,775
MILEAGE METER Here is Harvick's total miles run to date. Busch Cup Daytona 300 miles --- Rockingham 200.94 miles 399.84 miles Las Vegas 298.5 miles 400.5 miles Atlanta 311.08 miles 500.5 miles Darlington 201.39 miles 401.41 miles Bristol 132.5 miles 265miles Texas 300 miles 501 miles Martinsville ---- 240.62 miles Nashville 299.25 miles ---- Talladega 170.24 miles 497.42 miles California 300 miles 500 miles Richmond 187.5+150 miles (Truck) 300 miles Loudon 212miles ---- The Winston ---- 28.5 miles Nazareth 200 miles ---- Charlotte 297 miles 600 miles Dover 200 miles 400 miles Michigan ---- 400 miles Kentucky 300 miles ---- Pocono ----- 497.5 miles Sears Point ---- 224 miles Milwaukee 250 miles ---- Daytona ---- 400 miles Watkins Glen 201 miles ---- Chicago 289.5 miles 400 miles St. Louis 250 miles ---- Loudon ---- 317.4 miles Pikes Peak 250 miles ---- Pocono ---- 500 miles IRP 137.2 miles ---- Indy ---- 400 miles Watkins Glen ---- 220.5 miles Michigan 250 miles 250 miles Bristol 133.25 miles 266.5 miles Darlington 195 miles 490.3 miles Richmond 185.25 miles 300 miles Dover 199 miles 400 miles Kansas 190 miles 400.5 miles Charlotte 300 miles 501 miles Memphis 250 miles ---- Martinsville ---- 262.5 miles Talladega ---- 497.4 miles Phoenix 200 miles 312 miles
SUB TOTAL 7,340.6 miles 12,073.49 miles
GRAND TOTAL Harvick has run 19,414..09 miles this season in both the Winston Cup and Busch Series (includes one Truck race at Richmond).
* All told, Harvick will be running over 21,000 miles in races this season.