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Harvick Finishes Second at Richmond

Kevin Harvick
Kevin Harvick
RICHMOND, Va. (May 5, 2008) — Kevin Harvick and the No. 33 Kevin Harvick Inc. (KHI) Rheem Chevrolet team led 98 laps and earned a strong second-place finish at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway (RIR) in Friday night’s Lipton Tea 250. Harvick was leading and seemed to be on his way to his first victory in the Nationwide Series driving for his own KHI team until a caution flag on lap 239 slowed the field. The No. 33 team chose to stay on track while the teams from fourth-place back opted to change four tires. The new tires were the difference, as Denny Hamlin passed Harvick for the lead on lap 242 and took the victory in his home state.

"Tonight was a good night for our team,” said Harvick. “I'm proud of everybody on this Rheem Chevrolet team. The pit crew guys have been working hard, and what a turnaround from the first week on pit road. They got us the lead tonight and were able to make the car better as the night went on. We lost as a team tonight. We did everything right, we just came up a little bit short. On that late yellow, if we came to the pits, the other cars behind us would have stayed out. I was hoping more guys were going to stay out with us, but when the fourth-place car stops for new tires, I knew we were a sitting duck. If we keep running like that, good things will keep coming our way. We went down racing and that’s all you can ask for."

The No. 33 KHI Rheem team started the race from the sixth position, and Harvick moved forward to second place by lap 50. With good pit stops and a fast car, Harvick remained in second behind leader Carl Edwards for more than 90 laps, patiently waiting for later in the race to make a charge.

With the race under caution for the third time on lap 143, the Rheem team, led by crew chief Wally Rogers, made a quick pit stop allowing Harvick to exit pit road with the lead.

Leading the next 98 laps, Harvick was the quickest car on the track. Unfortunately, a late caution period played havoc with Harvick’s hopes for his first KHI win in the Nationwide Series. Eventual winner Denny Hamlin pitted for four tires and was able to pass Harvick for the lead on lap 242, with Harvick holding on to second place to the finish.

The team gained one position in the NASCAR Nationwide Series Owner’s Point standings heading into Darlington (S.C.) Raceway, where Harvick looks for not only his first win in a KHI car, but his first win on the track “too tough to tame.”

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