Pretty much everybody's painting this weekend's race at Martinsville as a duel between Jimmie Johnson and Denny Hamlin. And with good reason; the two have combined to win the last eight races at the track.
That's all well and good, but there's another hopeful in the great barn dance that is the 2010 Chase, and Kevin Harvick is a little unhappy that he's being treated like the wallflower.
"Obviously those guys have got the results to back it up, but we’ve gone from the beginning of the Chase and over-achieved on everything that we’ve done," he said. "This has just been a good year for us, and we’re not going to do anything different. If we hit a home run this weekend, we hit a home run. If we don’t, there is no reason to worry about trying to force anything."
But fear not, Harvick fans; he won't be just cruising around all Chase, hoping that something goes wrong with the 48. "I feel like we need to win a race in the next five to make it happen," he said, "but when you start forcing things to happen, you’ll wind up with a 35th, and then you’ll be done."
One element of the 29 team that will have a stark change will be the pit crew. Harvick's frustration with his pit crew has gone on all season, and virtually every race, he's barked on the radio about losing positions in the pits. As a result, team owner Richard Childress has swapped in Clint Bowyer's entire team, a drastic move but one which could pay off.
Oh, and if Harvick can't outrun Johnson, he has another idea for how to rein in the 48:
"Just hit him!" he laughed. "No, I’m just kidding ... kinda."