Bounce Back Time
April 18, 2007 | 2:36 P.M. EST
After all, Harvick has two NEXTEL Cup wins at the one-mile desert track and three top five finishes in eight career starts.
And after sweeping both Cup races at PIR last season, Harvick comes into this weekend's Subway Fresh Fit 500 with lots of momentum.
"Phoenix has been good to us over the years," Harvick said. "We won both Cup races there last year. We also won a Busch race last year and finished second in the other. Phoenix is one of those places I grew up racing on and have a long history there. I have been fortunate to have had a lot of success there and look forward to going back and hopefully turning some of this bad luck (this season) into good luck."
Since winning the Daytona 500, Harvick has been saddled with lots of that bad luck he points out.
He's only been able to muster one top five finish since Daytona, finding himself no better than 17th the rest of the season.
But Harvick hopes the tonic for a change for the better will be Phoenix, which will find the "Car of Tomorrow" in action on its biggest track so far, after two races on the short tracks of Bristol and Martinsville.
"I don’t really see Phoenix as a short track," Harvick said. "Even though places like Phoenix and New Hampshire are only a mile, they both have lots of room to race. Phoenix is always a fun track. There are always at least two lanes, and sometimes even more, to pass. I always seem to do well at Phoenix so I’m excited to see what we can do with the Shell-Pennzoil Chevy this weekend."
Harvick has no problems with the COT and is looking forward to racing the new machine on a larger-sized track.
"It will be a lot different setup-wise than Martinsville and Bristol," he said. "Jeff (Burton) went out there to do the tire test and he said it drove better there than the car he raced there last year. I think people are making a bigger deal of it than they have to. Obviously, we will have some kinks to work out but I think it is the responsibility of the drivers and the teams to make the cars better and, in the end, it is safety first."
Harvick hopes it will also be the No. 29 first on Saturday night.