– So I was sitting out at my hotel room, here in Los Angeles, at the end of that race. And when Kevin Harvick crossed that finish line I thought to myself, oh boy, here we go. Because I knew he was just going to have– he was going to have something to say.
– What is going to say, or what is he going to do?
– Exactly. So what did you think about what he did, got out and hit the back of that window.
– Well he made a lot of great moves on the racetrack. But that move he made after the race, that was the move of the day.
– I think he just sent a message. I think he got– you know, pointed to the roof, pushed on the roof. He talked about the haters in an interview I heard him do earlier in the week. So that was a message to the haters. And it may have even been to the– message to those guys that were upstairs, right next to us. I think he got it– I think he got his message across.
– I also think he sent a message to a lot of the young drivers in the garage. Showing everybody how to handle a situation like this, right? He went to the media center, answered every single question. He did all of the interviews. So, what do you think when you see him do it that way.
– Well the way he handled it was, go out there and win.
– Put the sticker on the car and show everybody that that wasn’t the case. And you saw with the fan interaction before the race, everyone was pulling for him in the stands. They weren’t booing him during intros or anything like that. And that just showed the loyalty there. And then to go out there and back it up is just something that you’ve got to do as a competitor. So that was pretty impressive. And it was funny to see how he handled that. I thought he was going to stand on the–
– –the back of the car, but [INAUDIBLE]
– Don’t want to go that far.
– Yeah, we saw in the daily fuel that it’s official now, they’re not going to appeal this penalty. And that was a lot to fight for. Not necessarily the fine. Not necessarily losing the car chief. But think about it, seven playoff points. And then 20 regular season points. But I think they just decided, you know what, we’re going to move on. We’re going to push forward. It’s all about the races coming up. We’re just going to take our loss and just move ahead.
– And about the races coming up, he could do something that he has never done before, again. Which is win four in a row. Because this past weekend he, of course, won three in a row. Four out of the first four races of the year. And it’s the first time he’s done that. Besides the fast cars, Harvick says focus on the part of his entire team has made a huge difference.
– There’s not many things that you can do to showcase character. And when you showcase character and grit as a team, as a unit, that’s more powerful than any of us being good at what we do. Because when you have that unity as a group, it’s so powerful, and so– It makes– it makes success, not easier to achieve– it makes it easier to achieve. Yeah, it makes it easier to achieve. Just because of the fact that everybody is so on the same page, and so determined to make something happen.
– Fast cars, veteran driver, chemistry, confidence, what’s the strength of this team?
– It’s the sum of all the parts. I mean you got to have all those things to have that kind of success where you dominate the way they have. But that team feeds off of the– the driver is a cheerleader. The driver is what the team feeds off. And what we’re seeing now is a mature Kevin Harvick. There was a time not too long ago when he would have been–
– He would’ve had a [INAUDIBLE]
– Ranting, raving– He’d of been hitting somebody else’s car, not his. But now he’s mature. He handles himself. You’ve got all this confidence, and now they– and they’re going about their business, getting the job done.
– Well, yeah. What have you seen out of him? In terms of the chemistry of this race team.
– Yeah, really those guys are racers. They’re– they’re out there to race and win races. So, we’re all out there for the same goal. But those guys really know what it takes. And they know that foundation that it takes. So I think that’s where it stems from. And outside of that, they do all their little details right.
– Yeah, not to take away anything from any team in that garage there, not even Williams 2014. But I don’t think, and they’ve been together a long time, there is a more unified team in that garage area. They rally around each other. And we’ve seen this time and time again. When controversy is surrounding them, or their back’s against the wall, how many times have we seen it in the playoffs when they had to go out and win the race? I think they thrive off that. That’s when they perform at their best.
– Yeah, every [INAUDIBLE]– What Kevin has done, and you hear it on the radio, when they have a mistake or something happens, they don’t panic. It’s OK, don’t worry. We’ll get it back. That’s the confidence they have, right? The resolve of that team. They all believe in each other. Every guy on that team, they believe in the driver, the crew chief. And it’s a real strong unit right now.
– You know, Kevin has talked about getting off to a fast start, and how they’re going to have to find the strength, or the inner fire to keep that going. And they used this past weekend as that fire.
– Yeah, it’s going to be hard to stop them, I think, this year. You know, I’m sure there’s going to be a lull there. It’s a long season. It’s hard to get re-energized, especially as the playoffs come. But those guys, I’m sure are going to take some inventory and kind of, store away those really good cars for the end of this year. And I’m sure you’re going to see them back out when they come back to Phoenix and Homestead.