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BMS Notes: Harvick looks to extend top-10 streak

Jeff Birchfield • May 31, 2020 at 3:00 PM

BRISTOL, Tenn. — Kevin Harvick has been the model of consistency through the first part of the season.

The driver of the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford enters Sunday’s Food City presents Supermarket Heroes 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway as the only NASCAR Cup Series driver to post a top-10 finish in all eight races this season.

He led in the second half of Thursday’s Alsco Uniforms 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway before fading in the late stages. He was 10th, his lowest finish this season.

Overall, Harvick has two wins and five top fives in 2020. The victories include the 50th of his Cup career, which came at Darlington and tied him with Ned Jarrett and Junior Johnson on the all-time wins list.

Harvick holds a 14-point lead over Joey Logano in the series standings.

WELCOME BACK BURKEY

Chris Burkey, the pit crew coach for Hendrick Motorsports’ Nos. 9 and 24 teams, is enjoying a homecoming this weekend.

Burkey, who hails from Greeneville, played football for Wingate — where he eventually started a college football coaching career. He later served as an assistant coach at East Tennessee State and North Carolina. In 2005, he joined the NFL’s Miami Dolphins as a scout under coach Nick Saban.

He transitioned to NASCAR in 2009 as a developmental pit crew coach for Hendrick. In 2014, he was named coach of the 5 and 24 teams.

BACK-TO-BACK WINS

Denny Hamlin is looking to go back to back at Bristol after winning the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race last August.

He could become the 13th driver to win back-to-back races at the high-banked short track. His Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, Kyle Busch, was the last to do so, winning in August 2017 and April 2018.

Two other active drivers — Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski — also have back-to-back Bristol wins.

BUSCH LOOKING FOR SECOND

Kyle Busch could tie a trio of NASCAR Hall of Fame drivers Sunday at Bristol.

Busch’s eight Cup wins at BMS have him one behind Cale Yarborough, Dale Earnhardt and Rusty Wallace on the track’s all-time list.

Darrell Waltrip has the most Bristol Cup wins with 12.

Busch holds the track record with 21 wins overall across NASCAR’s top three series. Waltrip, with 13 victories, ranks second on the list.

Kurt Busch ranks second among active drivers with six wins at Bristol, followed by Matt Kenseth with four. Other multiple winners are Keselowski, Hamlin, Logano and Jimmie Johnson, each with two.

BLUE OVAL BONANZA

Since NASCAR returned to action two weeks ago, Ford has won two of the four Cup Series races: Keselowski took last Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 and Harvick won the Darlington opener on May 17.

Overall, Ford has won four of the year’s eight races. Logano of Team Penske owns two of those after wins at Las Vegas and Phoenix.

Ford currently has a 19-point lead in the manufacturer standings.

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

Tyler Reddick holds a 44-point lead, 185-141, over John Hunter Nemechek in the rookie of the year standings.

Reddick won last August’s Food City 300 Xfinity Series race at BMS.

Nemechek, in 13th, was the highest-finishing rookie in Thursday’s Alsco 500.

Cole Custer sits third in the rookie standings race, three points behind Nemechek. Christopher Bell is fourth.

FRONT-LINE FORD

Ford has 37 all-time victories at Bristol, but the Blue Oval is making a big impact off the racetrack as well.

Since turning its attention to helping front-line workers, Ford has developed new powered air-

purifying respirators approved by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. The company also has produced more than 400,000 reusable surgical gowns that are manufactured from material used to make airbags and other durable fabrics, and shipped them around the U.S. And Ford has shipped more than 20 million shields to all 50 states plus Puerto Rico and Guam.

The company just announced an agreement with the Department of Defense to donate 200,000 face shields to military bases across the United States and abroad.


Food City presents the Supermarket Heroes 500 Lineup

At Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol, Tenn.

Lap length: .533 miles

(Car number in parentheses)

1. (2) Brad Keselowski, Ford.

2. (10) Aric Almirola, Ford.

3. (22) Joey Logano, Ford.

4. (12) Ryan Blaney, Ford.

5. (19) Martin Truex, Jr., Toyota.

6. (9) Chase Elliott, Chevrolet.

7. (18) Kyle Busch, Toyota.

8. (4) Kevin Harvick, Ford.

9. (21) Matt DiBenedetto, Ford.

10. (11) Denny Hamlin, Toyota.

11. (88) Alex Bowman, Chevrolet.

12. (1) Kurt Busch, Chevrolet.

13. (24) William Byron, Chevrolet.

14. (42) Matt Kenseth, Chevrolet.

15. (20) Erik Jones, Toyota.

16. (47) Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Chevrolet.

17. (6) Ryan Newman, Ford.

18. (38) John Hunter Nemechek, Ford.

19. (17) Chris Buescher, Ford.

20. (3) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet.

21. (8) Tyler Reddick, Chevrolet.

22. (41) Cole Custer, Ford.

23. (14) Clint Bowyer, Ford.

24. (48) Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet.

25. (34) Michael McDowell, Ford.

26. (53) Bayley Currey, Chevrolet.

27. (51) Joey Gase, Chevrolet.

28. (00) Quin Houff, Dodge, Chevrolet.

29. (13) Ty Dillon, Chevrolet.

30. (27) Gray Gaulding, Ford.

31. (77) Garrett Smithley, Chevrolet.

32. (32) Corey LaJoie, Ford.

33. (37) Ryan Preece, Chevrolet.

34. (15) Brennan Poole, Chevrolet.

35. (95) Christopher Bell, Toyota.

36. (43) Bubba Wallace, Chevrolet.

37. (96) Daniel Suarez, Toyota.

38. (66) Timmy Hill, Toyota.

39. (78) BJ McLeod, Chevrolet.

40. (7) JJ Yeley, Chevrolet.

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