Harvick has clear-cut approach to Talladega Chase race

DOVER, DE - OCTOBER 04: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John's Chevrolet, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway on October 4, 2015 in Dover, Delaware. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)
DOVER, DE - OCTOBER 04:  Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John's Chevrolet, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway on October 4, 2015 in Dover, Delaware.  (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)
DOVER, DE – OCTOBER 04: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway on October 4, 2015 in Dover, Delaware. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The Chase race most drivers dread most—especially if they haven’t won at Charlotte or Kansas—is the Oct. 25 event at Talladega Superspeedway.

The Contender Round’s elimination race is the most unpredictable in the 10-event playoff, but reigning series champion Kevin Harvick has developed a plan he thinks works best at the 2.66-mile restrictor-plate superspeedway, NASCAR racing’s largest oval track.

“There’s just a lot out of your control,” Harvick said. “For me, I’ve just made the decision over the last several years that you go there and try to position yourself at the front of the pack and just let it happen. Otherwise, it’s just a complete mental drain on yourself and the team.

“That’s the strategy. That’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to play the odds. … If you’re at the front of the pack, are you going to have less chance of wrecking? I don’t know. Somebody who’s way smarter than me is going to have to go back and look at all those races and decide where the crashes happened.

“But I think, for us, it’s just picking a mind-set, just pushing forward with it—and that’s it.”

About Greg Engle 7420 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for Examiner.com and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.