Kevin Harvick has to be wondering what does he have to do to get back to victory lane at the Michigan International Speedway. Heading into this weekend’s FireKeepers Casino 400 at the Irish Hills race track, Harvick had won five of the first 14 races of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season. He also led a series-high 909 laps too.
This was his chance to get back to victory lane in Michigan.
Harvick, was fourth in practice on Friday and qualified his No. 4 Ford fourth for Sunday’s race as well. In the early portions of the race he quickly found the top spot and would lead a race high 49 of the rain shortened 133 laps overall. He even won the second stage. But, rain fell at the wrong time and he’d watch his teammate Clint Bowyer celebrate instead. Had the rain held off for a few laps longer, Harvick on fresher tires would have passed his teammate for the win.
Instead, Harvick had to settle for his sixth runner-up finish on the 2-mile, D-Shaped oval in the last 11 starts. He was second in each of the two annual races at Michigan in 2013 and again in 2014. He finished runner-up again in 2015. He was fifth in both races in 2016 too.
Now, he has another runner-up for his sixth top five finish in the last seven races of the season as well. His 319 top 10 finishes during the course of his career ties Cale Yarborough for 16th ever.
He’s been so close so many times recently at Michigan. The speed was there to finally win again. Instead, he’s runner-up. That’s a familiar place for him unfortunately at Michigan.