Vegas Motor Speedway was the first race with the complete new rules package for the Cup cars. What exactly was your thoughts on this race?
Jim Utter: I found it a very entertaining race, specially considering the race went virtually caution-free (aside from point fractures ). When you consider the race ended to a 100-lap green-flag rush and there were four cars at the hunt for the win to this ending and the race winner had to defend against a last-lap, last-turn pass for the guide, I’m not convinced it can get much better than that. The teams finished in advance. The package did not change who had been in contention but seemed to create the action on the track more compelling.
The race was a improvement from this past year and complete, a solid race with a close finish. But with the way this aero package was accumulated, it was be not what those pruning in anticipated. There is talk of pack rushing, breaking records for adjustments and also the leader struggling to get away. They have a version of races became important. In the long run, it generated racing that was closer but was it better racing? It’s a step upward from 2018 but maybe perhaps not where they would like to function, and I had been satisfied with the answer of NASCAR since they don’t really appear fulfilled and will continue to work to improve the package.
Tim Southers: I presumed it had been a good race. I shall say that this first t even want cautions in a race to own a race that is fantastic. I admit I had been worried at the primary stage since it had been pretty familiar to most races however I thought the stages of the race proved pretty great. We saw more departure at the race and also also a close finish that can be what I thought people wanted. Since NASCAR stated following the race, this was only one race and they’ll continue working on this package. I do believe that they have been off to a fantastic start.
Just how surprised are you that the Ford Mustang is running as strong as it really would be always to initiate the season?
Jim: Maybe due to the down sides Chevrolet had this past season with the introduction of its Camaro, I’d expect a learning curve out of Ford with the Mustang. But now, it’s the others of the series that seems to be learning from Team Penske and Ford how to find a handle on the new aero package. Kevin Harvick looks equally as swiftly as this past season and penske already has among its three teams and I expect any week him to discover his way. Ford has been notable from this box.
Nick: Yeah, they’ve come from this box . Both Team Penske and Stewart-HAAS Racing look strong and I think lots of it has regarding the aero package. Unlike the past year at which Chevrolet was in their starting point bringing in the Camaro, everyone is shipped straight back for this package. I presume that allowed Ford to get away without sacrificing a measure while they with shifting and everyone works to get their arms around the new rules package.
Tim: I frankly thought Ford may have a learning curve to combat far as the Camaro had this past season but that I ’ve been proven wrong. The Mustang for the Cup Series has proven to be fast straight out from the gate and I don’t even see some basis for this to slow down all through this entire year. Team Penske has won back races and so that it looks like it might be yet another good season for Ford, StewartHAAS Racing cars is apparently very fast.
ISM Raceway was a path Kevin Harvick has mastered at over the past few decades. Do you believe he is the favourite entering the race this weekend after leading a lot of laps on the past two races without winning a race?
Jim: Harvick will likely be a favorite in Phoenix even though he had struggled so far this season. However, as I pointed out earlier, he and his No. 4 Stewart-HAAS Racing team may actually have just as much rate as this past season and as soon as they iron out some details and certainly will close races strongly, he will be linking Keselowski and Logano as locked at the playoffs. Phoenix can be as likely a spot for it to happen because any.
Nick: Definitely. Kevin Harvick has turned into one of the favorites weekly today, but notably at Phoenix. It’s a track he just captures, like plate racing for Dale Jr. or Bristol for the Busch brothers.
Tim: He’s directed laps at the last two races also has rate at his car so things are looking good for Harvick. Then in case you have a look in ISM Raceway – nine wins in 32 starts with 2-1 top-10 endings – by far probably the most wins at his resume he’s at any given track. Harvick and I think several other Ford drivers can be listed this weekend.
John Hunter Nemechek finished 2nd in the Xfinity Series race in Las Vegas and it has scored two top-10 endings with his brand new team this past year. Does one expect him to challenge Christopher Bell to your tournament?
Jim: I presume Nemechek can grow to be a competition for the tournament but he is definitely going to have to start leading laps onto a more frequent basis to get himself in the position to win races. He has to lead a lap this year, even though he did finish last weekend. Bell is going to be knocking on the door to Victory Lane alot this season and they will have to wind up front on a regular basis if someone is going to seriously challenge him.
Nick: Nemechek is solid enough for a rival, but I would call it WIShful thinking to really go head to head together with Bell. He seems to be getting better and had been only so quick this past year.
Tim: like I said a few weeks ago, I believe that the Xfinity Series title is going to have to proceed through Christopher Bell, but I also believe John Hunter Nemechek has the talent and the team to contend for the title. I think he’ll should run up at the top five that a little more to be in a position to contend for wins and I presume he’s capable of doing this. He’s with a new team once they get familiar with one another they will be contenders for wins on a regular basis and I believe.