Harvick the headline of 2018
We’re not really sure an All-Star race counts as a rest week or, honestly, a race week, but since it was an exhibition race and it’s run on the same track as this Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600, we’ll point out that Kevin Harvick did take that checkered flag.
Harvick also won the KC Masterpiece 400 at the Kansas Motor Speedway the week before the All-Star race. In fact, Harvick is on a bit of a roll. Kansas was his fifth win of the season.
Joe Gibbs Racing owns Top 10
A man with a first name that starts with ‘K’ took the pole. No, it actually wasn’t Kevin. It was Kyle Busch, who is the NASCAR Cup Series points leader. However, he’s never won a Cups points race in Charlotte. (But he did win an all-star race there.)
In fact, Busch will have all four of his Joe Gibbs Racing teammates near him at the start after they all finished in the top 10 in qualifying. Denny Hamlin will start in third, Erik Jones in fourth and Daniel Suarez in 10th.
So what about Kevin Harvick? Well, Havick won’t even start anywhere close to the front of the pack. After everyone has been chasing him all season, Harvick never even had a chance at qualifying after failing pre-race inspection three times. He’ll start last.
(This isn’t the first time the No. 4 has failed an inspection.)
Keep an eye on Erik (Jones)
In the final practice session for the Coca-Cola 600, Erik Jones posted the fastest speed of 187.045 mph. Jones, who will start in fourth was joined by Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin as one of the top 5 fastest speeds. Hamlin had the fifth fastest practice (195.938) behind Kyle Larson (186.664), Ryan Blaney (186.104) and Joey Logano (186.047)
Truex or Harvick?
Martin Truex Jr. almost won the Coca-Cola 600 last year but dropped to third due to poor fuel management. But he’s back with a heck of a year this season, with two victories this season. He’s had five finishes in the top five of his last six races at Charlotte Motor Speedway (not including the all-star race).
But this may just the the Year of Harvick. We know. He’s starting dead last. But three of the four races he’s won this season were on 1.5-mile tracks. Guess the length of Charlotte Motor Speedway? Yep. 1.5 miles.