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NASCAR NOTES: Harvick looks for improvement at Kansas

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Photo Credit: Jamie Squire/Getty Images for NASCAR Photo Credit: Jamie Squire/Getty Images for NASCAR
Glenn Campbell - "The Lugnut Cowboy" Glenn Campbell - "The Lugnut Cowboy"
KANSAS CITY, KANSAS -

With five races left in the Chase, Kevin Harvick finds himself in 10th position and 56 points behind leader Brad Keselowski.

The No. 29 team had high hopes entering this season after two successful runs at the championship. However, the postseason has left Harvick and his team with more questions than answers.

Scott Miller's departure as competition director at Richard Childress Racing left a big hole to fill and all RCR teams have suffered as a result.

"When Scott Miller left, there's kind of been a void in that particular area of the company," said Harvick on his team's lackluster performance in the offseason. "We need some structure and some focus on a lot of things that we need to get better at."

With the announcement of Dr. Eric Warren as the new competition director, Harvick feels that things could be turning in the right direction.

"Just having somebody there on a daily basis is going to be a step in the right direction," continued Harvick. "Now it's all about putting a system into place that everybody buys into to lead everybody on a day-to-day basis and hopefully make things better."

With a couple of extra practice days this week before Sunday's race in Kansas, the team is looking at this as the time to start turning things around.

"It's a great time for us," observed Harvick. "We obviously need to have a little more speed in our cars, so we've got a lot of things on the agenda to try to accomplish and learn the racetrack and close out the year well."

Success in NASCAR is built on team relationships just as much as mechanical knowledge. The addition of a new member will take some time but Harvick is anxious to get started.

"Obviously there's a relationship we have to build there," said Harvick on his new teammate. "We need to see his stance on a lot of things within the structure and direction of the company and I'm looking forward to hearing what he has to say and where we're going."

It's obvious that there will be several other changes taking place at RCR during the off season. The challenge will be to make the transitions quickly with a new car rolling out for the 2013 season. A new competition director is obviously a popular first step.

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