CONCORD, N.C. (Oct. 17) - REESE'S Racing driver Kevin Harvick had one of the strongest cars in the field Friday night at Lowe's Motor Speedway in a NASCAR Busch Series race and led a handful of laps late in the event. However, on lap 186 of 200,...
CONCORD, N.C. (Oct. 17) - REESE'S Racing driver Kevin Harvick had one of the strongest cars in the field Friday night at Lowe's Motor Speedway in a NASCAR Busch Series race and led a handful of laps late in the event. However, on lap 186 of 200, Harvick suffered a tire blowout and ended the race in 24th place.
"I felt a vibration a few laps before the tire blew," Harvick said. "I really thought it was my brakes and not the tire. I guess I was wrong. Once I felt the tire blow, I just held my breath, because I knew I was going to hit the wall hard. "
Harvick qualified the REESE'S Chevrolet in the 13th spot for the Dollar General 300. At the drop of the green-flag, Harvick fell to 18th. He told his team the REESE'S Chevy was not good on restarts, and it took about 10 laps for the No. 21 Chevy to get to full speed.
The first of a track-record 14 caution periods began on lap 29 of 200. The REESE'S Racing team decided to bring the REESE'S Chevrolet to pit road for its first stop of the night. Crew chief Ricky Viers called for an air pressure adjustment to help on the restarts. The REESE'S team also changed four tires and filled the car with fuel. Harvick gained four spots on pit road and restarted the race in the 10th spot.
The REESE'S Chevy continued to run in the top 15. However, Harvick was still having trouble getting the car going on the restarts. On lap 91, the caution flag was displayed for the sixth time of the race. "Happy" Harvick and the REESE'S team decided to bring the car to pit road, off sequence from the rest of the field. This pit strategy was going to help Harvick take the lead on the next round of pit stops. Harvick restarted the race in 27th place.
By lap 106, Harvick had the REESE'S Chevy back in the top 15, and by lap 147 he had taken the lead from Ryan Newman. Harvick led a total of 23 laps.
On lap 183 of 200, while Harvick was running in the fifth spot, he told his team he was experiencing a bad vibration from the front of the REESE'S Chevy. Unfortunately, just three laps later the right front tire of the No. 21 Chevy blew out, and Harvick hit the outside wall to bring out the 13th caution flag. He attempted to bring the car back to pit road, but the heavily damaged right front tire caught fire and Harvick jumped out and took the mandatory ride to the infield care center. The REESE'S team was done for the night and finished 24th.
Ryan Newman, a Nextel Cup Series star, continues to be the most dominant driver in the Busch Series this season. He won his fifth consecutive race. Elliot Sadler finished second, followed by Paul Menard, Carl Edwards and Jason Leffler, respectively. Richard Childress Racing driver Clint Bowyer finished 33rd.
The REESE'S Racing team remains fourth in the owner standings, 326 behind leader Martin Truex Jr.
Brandon Miller will resume command of the wheel when the REESE'S Racing team travels to Memphis Motorsports Park for the next race scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 22. Live television coverage of the race begins at 3:30 p.m. EDT. MRN will carry the live radio broadcast.