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Aug 05, 2014 - 07:18 AM
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2014 Pocono II: Kevin Harvick NASCAR Sprint Cup Post-Race Press Conference
Posted by: ASkyler on Aug 05, 2014 - 07:14 AM
2014 Pocono II: Kevin Harvick NASCAR Sprint Cup Post-Race Press Conference


MODERATOR: Let's go right into today's post‑race at the 41st annual GOBOWLING.COM 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup series race at Pocono Raceway. Race runner‑up is Kevin Harvick. Kevin drives the No. 4 Mobile 1 Chevrolet with Stewart‑Haas Racing. He also clinches a spot in the 2014 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Kevin, boy, you put on a heck of a show, wasn't the easiest of days for you. You battled a lot of adversity, but I would be doggone if you weren't up there contending for the win at the very end. So, congratulations. Maybe talk us through your day here today.


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KEVIN HARVICK: It wasn't exactly how you would lay it out on a piece of paper, for sure. We had a really fast car in clean air, a really loose car in traffic, and then we kind of got behind when I got the speeding penalty. I was making sure I didn't hit the 11 and I looked down and I was way above where I needed to be on speed. But we were able to somewhat dodge that wreck. There was a huge drain on the back of the straightaway on the middle of the asphalt, and ran through, and it bounced us up in the wall as we were trying to go through the wreck on the straightaway back there.

It wasn't too bad of damage. They were able to beat it out and in the end, top it off before we went green there and were able to save a bunch of gas with a bunch of cars that were doing the same thing there at the beginning of that run and in the end saved plenty of gas to be able it a race hard at the end. So it was fun. Car wasn't obviously quite as good after we wrecked it, but still they did a great job fixing it.

MODERATOR: We'll take questions now for Kevin if you have one. Raise your hand.

Q. Were you surprised that the car still had speed after the wreck or did you know that the damage wasn't too bad that you could come back with it?

KEVIN HARVICK: They said it wasn't that bad on the radio. Just had the left rear tire or the left rear fender in on the tire. So they beat it all back out, and luckily, it was on the left side and not the right.

Q. Can you talk about that last restart with Dale?

KEVIN HARVICK: I kind of blew the restart before that, lost two or three spots, and timed the last one pretty good and was able to get into turn one, but I just couldn't turn into the corner like I needed to, to stay beside him. He was able to carry momentum.

Then I caught a good draft off of three, the first lap on the restart, and was able to drive into one with him. And he kind of got up the racetrack and I just needed ‑‑ if I could get beside him going into one, I thought I could have a chance. He was a little bit better than I was in turn three and just had to kind of maintain there to just stay close. But I was going to need him to slip up in turn one and try to get position in turn two.

Q. Kevin, you've had a lot of races this year where you had a real fast car, a mistake happens, and you don't really get the recovery you want. Today you were in a situation where you guys went through adversity and you ended the race much better than you might have expected. How important, especially with the new team, is it for you to get one of those under your belt before the Chase and turn that momentum around when you have something happen over the course of a race?

KEVIN HARVICK: Well, I think today was very important. I think last week was kind of the same way. We didn't have the car that we wanted, I felt like we had a top three car today, it just, we were going to need track position and things were not really going well.

They were able to fix the car after we wrecked it. So that's what we talked about as we came back from the break was just scrambling, being able to scramble and get a finish of some sort to get something out of a day.

So that's what you're going to have to do the last 10 weeks and today we were able to accomplish that and hopefully this is a good sign of things to come.

Q. How did your car get affected during that wreck? Did it hurt the aerodynamics at all?

KEVIN HARVICK: The left front splitter was gone, both fenders were caved in onto the tires, so it definitely it was the opposite, I was loose most of the day and at the end I was a touch tight in all the corners. So definitely it affected it some, but at least it didn't make it looser, that would have been not ‑‑ it wasn't very much fun before that when it was loose, but it was still running fast.

Q. What was really your vantage point on that wreck going into it? Were you able to see what happened or was it situational?

KEVIN HARVICK: I saw a whole bunch of cars wrecking and we had just got our penalty, so we were in the back of it. I saw, I just hung a left and I just wasn't expecting a two foot by two foot drain to be a foot down into the ground as I went down through the asphalt. As I went through the drain and jumped up out of it, it hung a left to the wall. But I think we had the wreck clear, just timed the drain wrong, I guess.


Q. With you guys being secured in the Chase now, what's your mindset for the next handful of races?

KEVIN HARVICK: I don't think that's really changed. I think that it's just trying to get yourself ready for the last 10 weeks, to know that you're not going to win every race, you're going to have days like today where you have to scramble, you're going to have practices where your car is off, you're going to have things that are going to go wrong. On the days when things are right, you need to capitalize on them and win the race.

Q. Pocono is not in the Chase, but did you guys learn anything today with the car or the team or anything that can help you guys with the Chase?

KEVIN HARVICK: I have much faster cars than I have talent at Pocono, so I'm happy that they brought really fast cars to both races.

MODERATOR: Congratulations, guys, you put on an excellent, excellent race for you today and we'll see you at Watkins Glen.

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