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Kevin Harvick remembers how little interest he drew at the start of the season. He sat practically alone at a preseason media day, waiting as nobody ever came because few expected much as he entered his final year with Richard Childress Racing.
It was Harvick's first Sprint Cup win of the season — he opened the year with a win in the exhibition Sprint Unlimited at Daytona — and his 20th career victory. It put Chevrolet and Richard Childress Racing in Victory Lane, snapping a two-race winning streak by Joe Gibbs Racing.
Matt Kenseth didn't wait long to get his pole award back.
Carl Edwards is all about gaining any advantage he can.
As punishment, Kenseth was stripped of 50 driver points in standings, as well as the three bonus points he earned for the win that would have been applied in seeding for the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship. Crew chief Jason Ratcliff was fined $200,000 and suspended six races. Car owner Joe Gibbs also was suspended six races.
NASCAR has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to engines, tires and fuel on a race car. Anything even slightly improper is dealt with swiftly and severely. NASCAR always throws the book at offenders.
Just two races into the season and NASCAR already has a little driver discord.
Tony Stewart dealt with more Daytona 500 heartache.
Tony Stewart grabbed his tools and banged away on the No. 14 for do-it-yourself repairs.