Kevin Harvick on Ryan Newman: “His car gets as wide as his neck there sometimes.”
I love Martinsville!
Kevin Harvick had a hell of a day at Martinsville Speedway. At one point, he went a lap down to the race leader.
But, 500 laps in a long race. As the track conditions changed, the #4 car drove back through the field. He came out of Martinsville Speedway with a 10th place finish.
“When the sun started to go down, our speed was definitely better,” Kevin Harvick stated to NBC of his run at Martinsville Speedway.
“Our goal is always to come here and kinda just not defeat ourselves with a horrible finish. We had a decent day, not a great day.”
“We lost a few spots there at the end, racing Newman. His car gets as wide as his neck there sometimes,” Harvick says with a smile.
“It’s definitely Martinsville. Everybody’s racing hard, just finished 10th.”
There’s a little bit of a back story to this.
Harvick joins a long list of drivers that have commented on Ryan Newman. Clint Bowyer and Ryan Newman have had several issues in recent weeks. That started at Darlington when Bowyer ran into Newman while he was coming for the pit lane.
Bowyer and Newman then tangled on The Roval. They then got into it again at Dover.
Over the years, nearly every driver in the field has said similar things about racing with Ryan Newman. He’s just known to race you hard for every inch on the track.
Chase Elliott and Newman also made contact at Martinsville. Elliott beat on his bumper for several laps. Off the corner, Newman slid up. Elliott just gassed up the car and filled the hole. He wouldn’t have been able to hold it on the bottom with that much speed. But, he wasn’t trying to. Elliott just bounced off the door of Newman and forced the car to turn. He made the pass though.
There’s probably a little bit of bad blood between the Stewart-Haas Racing camp and Newman at this point as well. But, that will go away.
Newman has always defended his driving style. It’s not changing. He’ll say, ‘Racing hard? That’s what we get paid to do.’ And he’s right.
On to Texas
Harvick has been expected to make the Championship 4 since the first few races of the season. He’s been the car to beat for most of the year.
Heading into Texas, Harvick sits 25 points above the cut line in the 4th position. With 31 races at Texas, Harvick has an average finish of 11th. In his last eight races there, he’s finished inside the top 10, every time.
Last year, Texas was the turning point for Stewart-Haas Racing. Harvick moved to the outside of Martin Truex Jr and passed him for the win in the closing laps.
“Next week’s our best bet. As we go into the next two races, I look at Texas to be our best race track. We ran really well there in the Spring. We won the race there last year.”
“Our mile and half stuff has been really good,” Harvick concluded.