Follow me on

Twitter Feed Facebook Feed RSS Feed Linked In Youtube

Danica runs better, but gets crashed out....and Kevin Harvick wins Vegas 300

   Danica Patrick's crew pushes her car back to the garage (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)

    By Mike Mulhern

    Danica Patrick rebounded from a painful NASCAR experience at California's Auto Club Speedway and did much better during her time in Saturday's Nationwide 300, just her fourth stock car start.
    Patrick finished 36th after crashing into Michael McDowell midway through (lap 83 of the 200) the lengthy race, which ended under the lights after a late start at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. McDowell, a lap down at the time after blowing a tire, took blame for the incident. Patrick had just stopped for new tires and was closing faster than McDowell recognized.
    McDowell said he was low on the track, trying to give Patrick the outside line to get around him. But she moved to the inside of him.
    Patrick was not happy: "It would have been nice to have a decent finish. I'm not the type of person that crashes cars."
     Kevin Harvick, who has been shaking up Kevin Harvick Inc. the past few weeks, fought back from two bad pit stops to run away to victory in the 300, waged in front of chilly crowd that had to wait more than an hour for the start because of rain.     
    "Well, I get mad, and that's not what we expect on pit road. But I learned a long time ago you can only drive mad for so long....." Harvick said.
    Of course there is more to this win this weekend for Harvick than just another win. He's considering his future – 2011 – and Cup sponsor Shell is also considering its NASCAR future. That company has been in the Richard Childress camp since 2007, when Harvick won the Daytona 500 for Childress and Shell/Pennzoil.
   So what Harvick might be thinking, what Shell might be thinking, and what Childress himself might be thinking are all good questions....that none of them are interested in listening to at the moment.
   Harvick, it is believed, has been interested in moving to the Tony Stewart-Ryan Newman operation for Cup racing in 2011. However, sources close to that team indicate that team owner Stewart, though a good personal buddy of Harvick's, may be leaning now toward not expanding to three Cup teams next season. And Toyota has privately expressed disinterest in Harvick, long a Chevy driver, and what effect that might have on any Harvick option with the Joe Gibbs camp is uncertain.
   Harvick, of course, has the option to move KHI up to the Cup tour itself, though he has not shown much willingness to make the step to driving for such an owner-driver-owned Cup team.
   Much, naturally, depends on sponsor Shell, which is one of the most lucrative sponsorships in this sport. Childress would naturally want to keep Shell, regardless of what Harvick decides. So what Shell might do next, well, good debating point there.
   In a side note, Childress just announced "a partnership agreement" with former team owners Jeff Moorad and Tom Garfinkel, who are executives with baseball's San Diego Padres. Exactly what that might entail is not all that clear; Moorad and Garfinkel suspended their NASCAR team at the end of last season. Moorad and Childress both talked about the business "partnership" opportunities.
    "I have learned over the last 40 years that you have to keep innovating and improving to be successful," Childress said.


      [Note: You can use Twitter as an easy headline service for mikemulhern.net stories, with our instant Tweets to your mobile as soon as our newest NASCAR story is filed. And mikemulhern.net is mobile-friendly for viewing. You can also use the orange RSS feed button as a quickie headline service on your laptop or home computer for mikemulhern.net stories, by creating a Live Bookmark RSS feed on your web browser's toolbar. Or you can create a Google Alert for mikemulhernnet.]

        Finishing order of Saturday's Nationwide Las Vegas 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway






Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.

© 2010-2011 www.mikemulhern.net All rights reserved.
Web site by www.webdesigncarolinas.com