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Mar 27, 2014 - 06:29 AM
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2014 Martinsville: Kevin Harvick NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Mar 27, 2014 - 06:27 AM
2014 Martinsville: Kevin Harvick NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview

Kevin Harvick and the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet SS team travel to Martinsville (Va.) Speedway this weekend for the STP 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race.


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Racing Close to Home… The 0.526-mile short track is a mere 40-minute drive from Harvick’s home in Oak Ridge, N.C., and not much farther from where the driver and his family currently reside with his mother-in-law, Joyce Linville, in Kernersville, N.C. Harvick’s family is living there while their primary residence is being repaired after a fire in the early morning hours of November 27, 2013, damaged the home.

Honoring the Oak Ridge Fire Department… On Sunday, Harvick and the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet team will host the five members of the Oak Ridge Fire Department who responded to the fire at his home. Chief Steve Simmons and four additional firefighters will serve as honorary crew members in appreciation of their efforts last November.

Smoke Detectors Save Lives... The No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet will also carry a special decal this weekend to recognize the members of the Oak Ridge Fire Department who responded to the emergency call at Harvick’s house last year. Harvick and his wife DeLana woke up to the sound of a smoke alarm in their home, but couldn’t find the source of the smoke filling up the basement. The Oak Ridge firefighters were able to locate and put out the fire, and save the family's home. The event is a testimony to the importance of smoke detectors in the home – a message the Oak Ridge Fire Department puts emphasis on year round. The decal features the Oak Ridge Fire Department’s badge and the words “Smoke detectors save lives.” It will be located on the C-post of the car.
Chassis Info…The No. 4 team will utilize Chassis No. 864 in Sunday’s race. This is a new car from the Stewart-Haas Racing shop.

Martinsville Stats... Harvick has 25 starts at Martinsville Speedway. He has earned one win (April 2011), three top fives and 11 top 10s, and has an average start of 13.5 and an average finish of 16.2 at the track.

Loop Data... Harvick owns a number of solid marks in NASCAR’s Loop Data scoring system at Martinsville heading into this weekend's event, including: seventh in laps in top 15 (5,947 laps); eighth in driver rating (92.9); eighth in green flag speed (91.074 mph); eighth in fastest drivers early in a run (92.090 mph); ninth in speed in traffic (90.654 mph); ninth in average running position (13.804); ninth in fastest on restarts (89.708 mph); 10th in fastest laps run (220 laps); 10th in green flag passes (869 passes); 10th in laps led (216 laps); 10th in quality passes (510 passes).

Harvick on Racing at Martinsville Speedway

What is it like to race at Martinsville Speedway?

“Racing at Martinsville Speedway is definitely a challenge. You have the tight turns and you also have to worry about the tires falling off. It creates the ultimate challenge of keeping track position, dealing with the fall off of the car, deciding whether you want to be good on the start or end of a run, and when to get tires. There are a lot of challenges in strategy but also in balancing your car at Martinsville. So, not only does the race track itself create a lot to challenges with the tight racing quarters, but you deal with challenges in the strategy as well.”

What type of mentality must a driver have to be successful at short-track racing?
“It’s a balance between being patient and making the right moves. You can get lapped pretty quickly if your car is off. You want to take care of your race car, but you want to take advantage of the opportunities when you get them.”

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