Denny Hamlin and Kevin Harvick comment after banging bumpers and doors in the final laps at New Hampshire Motor Speedway
In the closing laps of the NASCAR Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway a caution flag waved. Most cars came to the pit lane for two or four tires. Denny Hamlin was one of the cars to pit.
Watch the Kevin Harvick vs Denny Hamlin video below.
Hamlin would restart the race in 4th with just 30 laps remaining. Kevin Harvick stayed on the track, dodging the pit lane after he made a stop 36 laps prior during the previous caution.
Denny Hamlin went on a charge to the front. With 5 laps to go, he was within a handful of car lengths of the race leader.
As Harvick worked to put the tail of the field a lap down, the gap evaporated. Hamlin was on the bumper of the race leader.
On the final lap, Hamlin gave Harvick a shove into turn one. They came off turn two, side by side.
Hamlin had the inside into turn three but he didn’t want it. Hamlin lifted and tucked in behind Harvick.
Harvick went to the bottom. Hamlin went for the outside and got a run. He had the momentum off the corner.
Harvick turned right into him and stalled that momentum. That’s exactly why Harvick went to the bottom in the first place.
The race craft paid off for Harvick as he went on to claim his first win of the 2019 season.
Harvick claimed 8 races in 2018. In the 20th race of the new season, he finally returned to victory lane.
Hevin Harvick on the race with Denny Hamlin
“The big problems started when those guys [laps cars] were running the line that I needed to run,” Harvick told NBC Sports after the win.
“They eventually move over. But, when you get in the corner and get to the center of the corner, the car’s already pointed in the wrong direction and chattering.”
“I could see him coming. [Into turn one], I could see him a half car length inside.”
“So, I knew I needed to be in the middle of the track and just try not to get spun out or knocked out of the groove.”
“I stayed beside him and he started letting off. Like, ‘Man, I really don’t want him on the inside of me right here. I need to be in control of which door goes into which door.”
“He came down [off turn four] and I was coming up at the same time. I just knocked the front out of the front of that car.”
“I wanted to be in control of the door slap. I didn’t want to be door slapped.”
“He took his shot down there. He knew that if he got by I was going to take me shot. And that’s what we’re suppose to do.”
“It’s just good hard racing,” Harvick concluded.
Denny Hamlin on the bump and run with Kevin Harvick
“I kinda shoved him up a little higher and tried to get him out of the groove,” Hamlin said.
“I wanted to just tap him there. But, I didn’t want to completely screw him. I at least wanted to give him a fair shot there.”
“Down the back stretch, I let off. I’ll just pass him on the outside and do this thing the right way.”
“Once I had that big run, he just turned right. But, I would do the same thing. It was a fun race.”
Hamlin has already claimed two wins so far this season. He’s a clear lock for the playoff rounds in just a few weeks.