Stewart, Harvick continue to make gains
Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images
Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick sit on pit road at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
By Dominic Aragon
June 18, 2014
After inconsistent starts to 2014, Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick appear to have turned the corner.
The Stewart-Haas Racing teammates have both steadily climbed in points over the last few weeks.
After an engine problem in Texas relegated the No. 4 team to a 42nd place finish, Kevin Harvick has climbed from 26th to ninth in points in eight races.
In the eight races since Texas, Harvick has scored a win, three runner-up finishes, and has led 582 laps, the most among all drivers, including 63 laps at Michigan Sunday.
“The car was fast, but we just wound up on the wrong side of all the strategy and finished second,” Harvick said post-race.
Tony Stewart isn’t currently holding a Chase spot, but he and his team have been finishing better.
Photo by Will Schneekloth/Getty Images
Kevin Harvick (4) races his boss and teammate Tony Stewart at the Sprint All-Star Race. Harvick has won twice this year.
Since his last place finish at Talladega, Stewart has scored a top-ten run in five races, led 25, gained six spots and points, and has finished on the lead lap in four of the five events.
Stewart’s 11th place run on Sunday propelled his team to 16th in points, seven points from the final Chase spot. Smoke said his team is continuing to make strides in the right direction.
“We had a way better racecar than we had all weekend here,” Stewart said. “We got the nose damage when the (No.) 42 got impatient there and blocked us, but we’re gaining on it every week, and I’m just very proud of the way things have been going the last few weeks.”
Stewart enters Sonoma a two-time winner at the track. Despite not winning in his own equipment, Stewart has finished second twice driving the No. 14.
In 13 starts at the road course, Harvick has five top-ten finishes, including a second place showing in 2007.