Sunday, July 15, 2012

Nationwide Notes: Harvick Upset With Failure To Cope

Unhappy Harvick
Brad Keselowski took advantage when leader Kevin Harvick had trouble negotiating the lapped car of Amber Cope Saturday, slipping past Harvick to claim a half-second victory in the NASCAR Nationwide Series F.W Webb 200 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

The Penske Racing driver lost the lead to Harvick on a restart with approximately 50 laps remaining, but regained the top spot when Harvick failed to execute a clean pass of Cope’s lapped machine on lap 179, losing momentum and the lead. After the race, Harvick ripped the inexperienced Cope, calling the niece of former Daytona 500 champion Derrike Cope, “somebody who shouldn't be on the racetrack, who has no clue what they're doing in the race car. She wants to be Danica Patrick, but she can't hold (Patrick’s) helmet.''

Keselowski admitted catching, “”a little bit of a break in traffic,'' adding, “that's the way it goes.'' He said he was unsure whether he could have passed Harvick without the unintentional interference provided by Cope, but admitted, “the odds were probably not in my favor.”

Cope to Harvick, "Your fault."
The 28-year old Cope was making only her second career Nationwide Series start, after being black-flagged from the Iowa John Deere Dealers 250 at Iowa Speedway in May for failing to maintain minimum race speed. Cope qualified 42nd Saturday, but failed to take the green flag after pulling to the garage with undisclosed mechanical problems prior to the start. She eventually joined the race, finishing 33 laps down in her No. 24 Chevrolet.

Harvick took a shot at Cope on Twitter after the race, tweeting, “Looking forward to tomorrow, should be an intense race! Best part about it is I know the #24 will be able to drive straight tomorrow!” 

Cope responded in kind, tweeting, “@KevinHarvick Way to go tough guy. I bet if u take a moment in your arrogance u will realize your fault. @keselowski figured it out.”

…Austin Dillon's third-place finish earned him a $100,000 bonus from the Nationwide ''Dash4Cash'' program.  Dillon, Elliott Sadler, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Michael Annett all qualified for the bonus last weekend at Daytona International Speedway, and after a steaming hot day in the Granite State, Dillon he has definite plans for the money. ''I was going to buy a pool,” he said. “I wish I had one today.”

…Stenhouse finished a strong fifth Saturday, but collapsed after completing a post-race radio interview. The Roush Fenway Racing driver has battled a case of strep throat in recent days, and with race day temperatures in the 90s, reportedly became dehydrated during the event. He was treated and released the track’s Infield Care Center. “They gave me some fluids,” said the defending Nationwide Series champion afterward. “Being a little sick all week, not eating much and not drinking enough fluids caught up with me after the race.”

 Photo Credits: Geoff Burke/Getty Images North America


  1. Wayne2:23 PM

    Reduce the field to 36 and then the S+P plus others won,t be there. After 10 laps they are gone anyway. The real fields are down to that or less anyway. Includes CUP. Come to play or stay home.

  2. Anonymous2:26 PM

    May Happy Harvick's words come back to bite him. He thinks he God's gift to NASCAR, and isn't the calmest person in the garage. When he causes problems for others, he thinks it's OK but when his skills fail him, it's everyone elses fault.

    Tighten it up Happy.

    Doug from NJ

  3. james hester2:30 PM

    it always the same with Harvick, he allways ready to jump on some one after the race is trying to save face because i did not finish where he thought he should have. He has gotten in nearly every one face on the track at one time or another and nearly ever time he as confronted some one most of the back him away like Montoya did and Carl Edward and even when he first got in the sport even Jeff Gordon back him up when he ran up and tried to grab him, you would think he would learn one day to keep mouth shut, but guess not huh

  4. Anonymous3:01 PM

    One of Nascar's poor sports shows his true colors yet again. If you can't handle racing around some inexperienced drivers in the Nationwide Series, STAY IN YOUR Budweiser Chevy on Sundays.

    On a positive note, look for possible sponsorship opportunities for Kevin with Kleenex Tissues in the near future.

  5. Anonymous3:16 PM

    I actually expected that Harvick would be sporting a softer, kinder attitude after the birth of his first child. Instead, he let loose on a rookie with a barrage of unnecessary, hurtful language. I’m fairly sure that the rookie drivers were instructed to hold the bottom and allow faster cars to pass on the outside. Apparently, the veteran drivers weren’t aware of those instructions. Each time I saw Cope being lapped she was down on the yellow line.
    Harvick squandered an opportunity to mentor and chose instead to be a wretched antagonist. This was an awkward moment for media coverage of NASCAR. Congratulations to the Harvicks for the birth of a son. I hope he never has to face the kind of verbal abuse Kevin dished out on Saturday.

  6. Bob O5:30 PM

    Well Mr harvick is the new fellar in the family keeping u up @ night and making u an unhappy harvick. or do we need the boss to put her race suit back on and straigthen out your troubles lol

  7. ZGM576:00 PM

    I am a big Harvick fan, but to me the failure was twofold. Kevin and his spotter should have known the 24 was going to pull low as that is what she was doing all day long having been given the passing flag lap after lap...poor decision on Kevins part....however, Cope should have also known the preferred line going into 3 was low and held her line. she was attempting to do what she thought was right....wooops

  8. Anonymous8:04 PM

    Lighten up Kevin

  9. Brandon in TN8:51 PM

    I guess all of the readers ripping Harvick failed to see how much of a rolling chicane Cope was all day. She also ran Ryan Truex into the grass as well as holding up other drivers.

    If you are black flagged for failing to meet minimum speed and there is nothing wrong with the car, you have no business being on the track.

  10. Anonymous4:16 AM

    now you know why he`s called "Happy"

  11. I think Harvick was a little harsh. Having said that, there's enough blame to go around. Cope looked like she wanted to go high to get out of his way and realized she had a car outside which caused her to pull down on Harvick. Its was bad luck, bad timing, and bad driving.
    I'm not a fan of any Cope on the track, Uncle Derrick lucked into, and rode his 1 Daytona win to a career as a start and parker- "Former Daytona 500 winner Derrick Cope will start 41st..." The Nieces are just carrying on and ol' Family Tradition.

  12. Damon8:32 AM

    Gotta love Harvick for telling it like it is.

  13. This was actually quite a fun twitter exchange, had you read it you wouldn't be defending this girl. She was calling fans stupid and being down right rude to everyone. They're not in this to race, they're in it for the money and popularity and only help reinforce the bad image of women in this sport. They should keep their mouth's shut and be appreciative they get to start at least one race and stay the heck out of the way.