NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Pure Michigan 400
Topics: Pure Michigan 400
August 18, 2013
THE MODERATOR: We'll get started with our post race press conference. We welcome Kevin Harvick, who finished second in today's race.
Kevin, you're fourth in points. Talk a little bit about the race out there, how you feel going into the Chase.
KEVIN HARVICK: Yeah, it was a good weekend for us. We needed a good, solid weekend after Indianapolis and Pocono. Our oval track, flat track stuff was not where it needed to be. We were able to come here this weekend and incorporate some different things into our car.
From the time we unloaded off the truck, the car was really fast. All in all, a good weekend. Just miss‑timed that last restart there. I had a great run on the 55. Was going to beat him to the line by too much, wound up having to drag the brakes. From there, it was going to be sketchy if we were going to keep the 22 back there.
Went for it, backfired a little bit there as we got three‑wide and lost some track position. I didn't think we were going to be racing the 55 there for the win. I thought if we could just get out of turn two in second we'd be in good shape. Got a little bit greedy and lost a couple spots there. That's what ultimately cost us the win.
THE MODERATOR: We'll take questions for Kevin.
Q. The last five laps, did you have any concern about fuel?
KEVIN HARVICK: We were two laps short when we filled up. We were able to have at least one caution that I remember. We saved a bunch under those cautions. I was able to save a bunch of gas under green during that first part of the run when I was behind the 43.
I felt pretty good about where we were. I think they were ultimately concerned about the green‑white‑checkereds. Didn't come down to that so it didn't matter, but we were good on gas ‑ best I know (smiling).
Q. Generally what do you like, what maybe keeps you awake at night thinking about the Chase and matching up with the other contenders?
KEVIN HARVICK: We beat 'em all today. If we can just do that, we'll be fine (smiling).
It's just going to come down to getting on a run. Over the last 10 weeks obviously we've tried some different stuff over the past month. Today was the first time we've hit on some things. The car had speed and it was fast.
We never got all the way to the front. We got to second, but never got all the way to the front as far as leading the race. If we could ever have clear traffic and got out front, we would have been really good. Everybody who got out front was really good.
But we were able to make passes, use the bottom of the racetrack. That's always an encouraging sign when you can make passes and everyone else is kind of locked into one groove.
I was very pleased with the day. It's just going to come down to getting on a hot streak over 10 weeks and not making any mistakes.
Q. Looked like a lot of fun out there. How do you think the track is grooving in?
KEVIN HARVICK: Well, last time the center groove was the preferred groove. Last time the bottom really opened up in three and four if you had your car turning and were able to stay on the throttle in exit. This time it seemed like one and two opened up, as well, on the restarts especially.
It just takes time to be able to burn a track in, obviously. A winter won't hurt anything. Still very fast. The cars were really fast this weekend. I think the groove definitely widened out the opposite way than it normally does. It got wider going to the bottom. But still more room to race than there was last time.
THE MODERATOR: Kevin, thank you for your time.
KEVIN HARVICK: Thank you.
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