NASCAR XFINITY Series Overview
Event: My Bariatric Solutions 300
Date: Saturday, April 8, 2017
Location: Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth
Layout: 1.5-mile oval
Kevin Harvick Notes of Interest.
Kevin Harvick, Driver No. 41 Hunt Brothers Pizza Ford Mustang
You have been very successful in the XFINITY Series at Texas. What is the biggest difference between the two series?
“I just don’t think we’ve ever had a whole day come together for whatever reason at Texas on the Cup Series side. We’ve had good runs there in the past but just haven’t gotten to victory lane. When you look at the XFINITY Series and Truck Series as owners and driver, we’ve been to victory lane a lot there. So, that is kind of the running joke with Eddie Gossage (Texas Motor Speedway track president) – victory lane is open after Cup Series races, too? We just have to figure out how to get in there.”
What is your outlook for the XFINITY race this weekend at Texas?
“Texas Motor Speedway is a track I always look forward to racing at just for the fact that I’ve had success there in the XFINITY Series. We were strong on the mile-and-a-half program earlier this season at Atlanta Motor Speedway in our first trip out in the No. 41 Ford Mustang. There are a lot of unknowns with the new track surface at Texas, but I look forward to getting out there and racing the Hunt Brothers Pizza Ford Mustang for a win. I know Richard (Boswell, crew chief) and the guys have been working really hard to get our XFINITY program at SHR up and running, and I look forward to seeing what we’re going to have this weekend in Texas.”
Richard Boswell, Crew Chief No. 41 Hunt Brothers Pizza Ford Mustang
Atlanta Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway couldn’t be more different in terms of old versus new surface. Are you able to take anything you learned at Atlanta and have it translate to Texas?
“I think the mechanical side of things still works. It’s just a matter of the difference in what the tires are going to be, cycle-wise, and whether or not they need to be run on stickers or scuffs. The biggest difference from Atlanta, I think, is just the way they restructured the track in turns one and two. They took some of the banking out, and widening out the groove will probably be the most challenging part.”
What were you able to take away from your first race with Kevin at Atlanta?
“That he is a pretty incredible racecar driver. (Laughs). I think just knowing he is the type of guy that you can trust without having any concern at all. He knows these cars and knows what he needs to go fast. His feedback is so awesome that it makes our job so much easier.”
How has this team come together over the last couple weeks?
“Everybody has done an awesome job. Everyone has worked hard and worked together from the No. 00 to the No. 41. From our side, it’s just one team. We’ve all worked really well together. Jeff Meendering and all his guys have been great. They keep us up to date on how they are inspecting cars and stuff like that. I feel like we’ve been at every race, even though we haven’t. Obviously, there’ll be some things that we as a team have to catch up on. We are basically four races behind the way I see it versus those guys who have been going to the track, so that makes it a little more difficult. We have some really great guys, so I’m not really that concerned.”
- Tom Jensen
NASCAR Editor at FOXSports.com & RACER Magazine