HARVICK GOING FOR NUMBER THREE: The NASCAR Nationwide Series will take the action to Chicagoland Speedway where Kevin Harvick will race for win number three at the track this Saturday behind the wheel of the No. 33 Rheem Chevrolet Impala. In eight starts at the 1.5-mile D-shaped oval, the Kevin Harvick Inc. (KHI) co-owner has two wins, one pole, four top-five and five top-10 finishes. The driver has led 94 laps around the Joliet, Ill. facility and has an average starting position of 5.8 and average finish of 13.0.
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY: Chicagoland Speedway, which celebrates its 10th anniversary in 2011, welcomes the Nationwide Series as the first of NASCAR’s top-three series to hit the track this season. In its 10-year history, two-time Nationwide Series champion Harvick has collected two wins (2007 and 2005) while racing for Richard Childress Racing. KHI, which also celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, has yet to earn a victory at Chicagoland. Harvick will look to capture his third series win and first in his own equipment at the track.
CHASING A RECORD: Should Harvick finish in the top 10 this weekend, he would tie Tommy Houston’s Nationwide Series record of 198 top-10 finishes. Harvick currently has 270 starts, 37 wins, 22 poles, 139 top-five and 197 top-10 finishes in the series. Over the course of 13 years of competition, he has led 7,078 laps.
CHASSIS HISTORY: The No. 33 Rheem team has prepared chassis No. 063 for this weekend’s event at Chicagoland Speedway. This will mark the first time this particular chassis will be used this season.
PREVIOUS RACE RECAP: Kevin Harvick piloted the No. 33 Rheem Tankless Water Heaters Chevrolet Impala to a 16th-place finish at Charlotte Motor Speedway last weekend. Harvick started the 200-lap event from the second position. The driver led 33 laps and held track position among the top-five for most of the race until he suffered a flat tire after contact with another competitor on a restart with only 45 laps to go. The KHI crew put fresh left-side tires on the No. 33 and Harvick fought hard over the remaining laps to finish in the 16th position, one lap down.
HARVICK’S THOUGHTS ON RACING AT CHICAGOLAND: “Chicagoland has been a good track to us, but it’s been a while since I’ve made it to victory lane there. We started from the pole last season and finished in the top 10. It’d be great to start from the pole this weekend and get the No. 33 Rheem Chevy to victory lane. “This track is unique. You can go through the corners pretty much wide open. You can let off sooner than you do at most places we go to, and you can drive it all the way through the corners under power. There is a lot more throttle there than most places. You get back in the gas a lot quicker there too, compared to other places.”
About Rheem: Rheem Manufacturing Company (www.rheem.com) is privately held with headquarters in Atlanta. In its 86th year of operation, the company manufactures a full-line of eco-friendly, technologically advanced residential and commercial heating and cooling systems; tank, tankless, solar and hybrid heat pump water heaters; whole-home standby generators, controls, swimming pool and spa heaters; indoor air-purification products; and commercial boilers throughout North America and world markets. The company’s premium brands, including Raypak, Ruud and Rheem, have been recognized with countless industry and consumer awards for reliability, innovative design and high quality. Rheem is the official heating, cooling and water-heating supplier to Richard Childress Racing (RCR), Kevin Harvick, Inc. (KHI) and is a primary sponsor of RCR’s No. 29 Sprint Cup Series car and KHI’s No. 33 Nationwide Series car and Camping World Truck Series No. 2 truck. Harvick was named Nationwide Series “Driver of the Decade” in 2010.
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Kevin Harvick Nationwide Series Statistics at Chicagoland Speedway Starts: 8 Wins: 2 Poles: 1 Top 5: 4 Top 10: 5 Laps Led: 94 Average Start: 5.8 Average Finish: 13.0 Race Info: June 4, 2011 Chicagoland Speedway STP 300 1.5-mile D-Shaped Oval 200 Laps/ 300 Miles
Broadcast Info: TV: ESPN will broadcast live at 8:00 p.m. EST Radio: MRN will broadcast live at 7:45 p.m. EST
Car Specs: Chassis: 063 Engine: Earnhardt-Childress Racing (ECR)