Team Chevy Racing press release
CHEVY NSCS AT PHOENIX ONE: Kevin Harvick Press Conf. Transcript
KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 29 RHEEM CHEVROLET, met with media and discussed NASCAR penalties levied against the No. 48 of Jimmie Johnson, the new configuration of the Phoenix track, keeping a mobile phone in your car while racing, running the Nationwide Series this weekend along with Sprint Cup, and more. Full Transcript:
TALK ABOUT COMING TO A TRACK WHERE YOU KNOW WHERE VICTORY LANE IS:
“Well, this has obviously been a good track. We had a good test out here and just didn’t race very well; but our other cars have raced fairly well. So we’re looking forward to it. I get to race the Nationwide car this week so that will be a good way to kick-off the weekend and kind of get everything in sync and get going.”
HAVE YOU HEARD NASCAR’S PENALTIES AGAINST THE NO. 48 (JIMMIE JOHNSON)? IF SO, WHAT DO YOU MAKE OF THEM?
“You know, that’s a fine line to balance there because I’m one of those guys that thinks innovation is what has made this sport what it is. And there’s a fine balance between where you cross the line and where you don’t. The only way to find out is to push things to the limit and see if you get away with it. But, I don’t make the rules, so it’s not something that I have the choice of saying you should have done this, or should have done that. They make the rules. They make the law. And everybody has to abide by it. But the crew chiefs, that’s their job. And sometimes they cross the line and you’ve got to find that line. So, it’s part of it.”
BRAD KESELOWSKI CAUSED QUITE A STIR WITH HIS TWEETING DURING THE DAYTONA 500 RED FLAG. DO YOU KEEP A PHONE IN YOUR CAR? NOT NECESSARILY TO TWEET, BUT DO YOU AND WOULD YOU, NOW THAT YOU KNOW YOU CAN?
“Well, to be honest with you I had no idea that was something that would even remotely come into play as far as keeping your phone in your car during a race. But I guess if you’re going to keep up with that side of it, you’re going to have to. I’m going to look for every app I can for mile-per-hour, GPS mapping, and anything I can find to put in my car. I’m looking for it because I’m looking to outlaw this rule as fast as I can because I don’t want to have to keep up with it.”
YOU’RE ON A CAMPAIGN
(Laughter)… “I have found a mile-per-hour app, so that’ll be good down pit road (more laughter).”
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON HOW THE RACE TRACK IS COMING-IN AFTER THE REPAVE?
“They did a great job last time, of getting the track prepared. And I think both races were really good races for the first time coming to a race track and having new asphalt and new tires and new everything. Both races were very exciting; and the race track really widened-out as we went through the races, whether it was Nationwide or Cup, last time. The groove widened-out a lot. They’ve done a great job and took the fans into consideration, and everybody can see what’s going on around the race track. And the track is very racey, as well. So I think everybody is excited. Every worry that you had coming here last time, goes away.”
DID ANYTHING SURPRISE YOU ABOUT THE NEW CONFIGURATION OF THE RACE TRACK? IF SO, WHAT DID YOU TAKE FROM LAST YEAR’S RACE THAT YOU CAN USE FOR THIS WEEK?
‘I think as we went through the race, I think tires meant a little more than probably what we all expected them to. You still had to have track position, but that’s something that you have to have at every race track. I think as I ran the race, you were able to be a lot more aggressive with the car; and our car was too tight and we needed to run the car looser than what I expected to because of the groove widening-out and the cars being all over the race track. You could pass. Everything surprised me, to be honest with you, about the track. I think it still feels like Phoenix going into Turn 1and into Turn 3. The exit of Turn 2 is dramatically different than what it was before. But I think all the drivers would agree that it’s a lot of fun to drive.”
HOW DID YOU ACTUALLY SPEND THE NATIONWIDE AND TRUCK RACES LAST WEEK AT DAYTONA? WERE YOU THINKING YOU WERE GLAD YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO PAY FOR ANY WRECKED TRUCKS?
“I was. I was sitting there with a calculator adding it all up (laughter); thinking man, that’s expensive. Richard (Childress) is not going to like me. But I sat back in the motorhome and watched both races and they did tear up a lot of stuff. That’s just part of superspeedway racing; especially with the first part of the year and the way things go. Every once in a while you’ll have that stuff at those particular races. So it was really exciting to watch from my couch, and a whole lot cheaper (laughter).”
WHEN SOMEONE OF YOUR STATURE COMPETES IN A NATIONWIDE RACE, DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU’RE HELPING YOUNG GUYS BY LETTING THEM USE YOU AS A STANDARD TO RACE AGAINST?
“When I started in the Nationwide Series you had Mark Martin and Jeff Burton and a lot of the guys running Nationwide and we were able to win races and keep up. You can learn a lot of basic things if you just pay attention. So, you’re right; it is all about winning. And this is the first time I’ve been in a Nationwide car since I think September or the first part of October since last year. I was a little disenchanted with the way we were running and the way things were going, so this will be the start to a fresh year. I think as you talk about the younger guys, I think those guys are here to do the same thing and try to learn and win races. You saw Trevor (Bayne) win. You saw (Ricky) Stenhouse win. So, those are the guys who will go to the next level and compete on a weekly basis on Sunday.”
HOW WOULD YOU ASSESS HOW POWERFUL FORD WILL BE IN 2013 WITH THE COMBINATION OF ROGER PENSKE AND JACK ROUSH BEING LEADING TEAMS FOR FORD?
“Well, I’m having a tough time assessing 2012 (laughs); so we’ll just stick to that first (laughs).”