FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sunday, July 22nd, 2018
NOTES & QUOTES FROM NBCSN’S MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES COVERAGE FROM NEW HAMPSHIRE MOTOR SPEEDWAY
“We just had the pleasure of watching two of the very best in the sport, not just now, but two of the best ever.”- Jeff Burton on Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch
“If there was a win available, he was going to do whatever it took to get it.” – Steve Letarte on Harvick
LOUDON, N.H. – July 22, 2018 – NBC Sports Group revved up for its fourth week of 2018 NASCAR on NBC racing with more than 17 hours of trackside coverage from New Hampshire Motor Speedway, in Loudon, N.H. Coverage was highlighted by this afternoon’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race on NBCSN, which saw Kevin Harvick, and the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford, take the lead in the final laps of the race to get the checkered flag. The victory is Harvick’s sixth win of the season.
21-time Cup Series race winner Jeff Burton, Daytona 500-winning crew chief Steve Letarte and NBC Sports’ newest on-air contributor Dale Earnhardt Jr. took over NBC Sports’ broadcast booth for a special analyst-only call of the race. Lead NASCAR on NBC race announcer Rick Allen contributed a fresh perspective from pit road alongside reporters Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast and Parker Kligerman.
Coverage began on NBCSN at noon ET with NASCAR America. Krista Voda anchored pre-race coverage alongside Hall of Fame driver Dale Jarrett.
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The following are highlights from this afternoon’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race coverage on NBCSN.
Burton on the battle between Harvick and Busch for the win: “We just had the pleasure of watching two of the very best in the sport, not just now, but two of the best ever. Watching those two go after each other is so much fun.”
Earnhardt: “That’s what you want to see when you come to a race. You want to see these guys do anything it takes to win.”
Letarte on Harvick: “He’s no nonsense, and always has been. Ever since he was a little kid. We see it time and time again. I don’t think he cared that it was Kyle Busch. I don’t think he would care if it was his teammate. If there was a win available, he was going to do whatever it took to get the win… and he did.”
Letarte on Harvick passing Busch with eight laps to go: “Harvick calculated that like a surgeon.”
Earnhardt on Busch and Harvick with 10 laps to go: “You have to appreciate that you are watching two of the best in the series. They are nudging, but that is good hard racing. They are being aggressive with each other.”
Burton on Paul Menard: “This is a driver and a team that is starting to find their rhythm. It’s taken Paul and his crew chief Greg Erwin a little time to really get working together, but Menard and his team have been doing a great job during the last month.”
Earnhardt on Kurt Busch, following Lap 100: “Kurt Busch is on his game. He’s just like his brother. When he is focused and determined, he will do everything it takes to win.”
Earnhardt on the skill level of Kurt and Kyle Busch: “There is something special about both of these guys. They have a raw ability and unique personality. They have a trait that makes them really, really tough to beat. Growing up racing against each other, as brothers, drove them to be even more competitive than they might have been had they not had each other. They both have the same passion for winning. They fight so hard for it. Not many guys have that level of determination.”
Letarte to Allen on Lap 10, following his first pit stop report from pit road: “So Rick, how did it feel? How was it?”
Allen: “It felt good. I might have blacked out for a second, but hopefully it all worked out.”
Earnhardt: “Yeah, that’s exactly how I felt a few weeks ago when I first started doing this.”
Allen on his special assignment today working on pit road: “In 16 years of covering NASCAR racing, this will be the first time I have been a part of this aspect of the wonderful chaos. This is just an unbelievable feeling. There is an incredible energy down here that I love. I have nine drivers I’m watching, I have the Peacock Pit Box, and I’m really looking forward to watching Cup Series racing from a new perspective here on pit road.”
Jarrett on how NASCAR’s “Big Three” find motivation: “Their motivation at this point in the season comes from playoff points, because you can’t ever have too many. You never know what’s going to happen. The other form of motivation now is from each other. The motivation to be the one that everyone is talking about. They all have multiple wins, so they are being talked about as a group, but what you want to do is separate yourself if at all possible. I don’t see that happening, because they are all so talented and their teams are performing at such a high level right now. But at some point, it will have to happen.”
Earnhardt on New Hampshire Motor Speedway: “The track hasn’t changed that much over the years. They did make some configuration changes to the bottom groove, but really you’re still fighting the same things. I would drive my car as far in to the corner as I could. If I could not do that, we would work on it. I knew I needed to drive as hard to the center of the corner as I could, to have the best shot at getting the car to turn, rotate and come off the corner the right way. There was only one way to drive here.”
Jarrett on Jimmie Johnson: “Every champion in every sport has been through difficult times like this. The very best don’t win all the time. That’s what separates Jimmie Johnson, and those great champions, from others. They have that ability, the willingness to do whatever it takes to put themselves back in the winning position again. The other drivers should enjoy this small break while they can, because Jimmie Johnson will be back winning races again and battling for championships in the near future.
–NBC SPORTS GROUP–