Kevin Harvick Wows Mesa Marin Fans

Harvick wows hometown fans By Dave Rodman BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (April 10, 1999) Kevin Harvick recorded a 2nd-place finish on his hometown track. Kevin Harvick gave his hometown fans a lot to cheer about Saturday afternoon in the NASCAR...

Harvick wows hometown fans By Dave Rodman

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (April 10, 1999) Kevin Harvick recorded a 2nd-place finish on his hometown track. Kevin Harvick gave his hometown fans a lot to cheer about Saturday afternoon in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Dodge California Truck Stop 300 with a runner-up finish behind Rick Carelli. Harvick gave up a chance to defend his title in Friday night's Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring, Pepsi 100 in order to concentrate on the truck race, so the 23-year-old Bakersfield native wanted his effort to be one position better. But after turning the rough start to his NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season around, Harvick was certainly not complaining.

"We wanted to win this thing real bad, but we'll take a 2nd and go on down the road," said Harvick, who scored his career best finish in his 49th race. "The fans got to see some good NASCAR Craftsman Truck racing today."

They did, as the typically frenetic short-track action on the high-banked half-mile resulted in 14 lead changes. Harvick led twice for 51 of the 300 laps. His "local knowledge" was worth a gold mine on this day.

"The groove up top wasn't too bad, but you had to be on the bottom and be really easy on the throttle," Harvick said. The race -- after Carelli checked out with his fresher tires -- came down to a two-lap run after the final restart and Harvick was ready.

"The last lap Ron drove it in a little too far and washed up," Harvick said. "We were putting on a heck of a race. We probably should have come in and put on tires that last time, but he (Hornaday) stayed out and we stayed out. And then we got to racing pretty hard there and to bumping and banging a little bit.

"Me and Hornaday were racing pretty hard, and Carelli got by us and that's the way it goes," Harvick said, realizing that his Liberty Racing team has raced well enough to win this season. "It's just good hard racing. I was just trying to win. Unfortunately Carelli came in and got some tires, and he wound up being pretty good there at the end.

"I didn't see him all day long, but he had some good tires. We'll take the second for Liberty Racing and Porter-Cable and go to Martinsville.

"We've been solid pretty much every week. We struggled a little bit at Monroe and got a top-10 out of it. I don't think you'll see any real weak points out of this team anywhere."

Source: NASCAR Online

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About this article
Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Kevin Harvick , Rick Carelli