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LAS VEGAS -- Kevin Harvick doesn't want his Richard Childress Racing teammate Scott Wimmer to give up his day job, driving Nextel Cup and Busch Series Chevrolets for the veteran team owner.

But both men appreciated the job Wimmer did when he shivered for two days on his perch high above Las Vegas Motor Speedway, spotting for Harvick's No. 29 Chevrolet during the final Jackson Hewitt Preseason Thunder test session.

"I hope he doesn't have a future in the spotter's stand," Harvick said, laughing. "He's done a good job, though."

Harvick said that was a sharp contrast to his lone experience as a spotter, when "they kicked me out -- told me I was terrible," he said. "So I don't know a whole lot about it, but I know it's very hard."

Wimmer said he hadn't spotted "in a long time," or since he donned the headphones to spot for younger brother Chris at a short track ASA Late Model race back in Wisconsin.

"It's a little different when cars are going 180 miles an hour and you're trying to get somebody up [to speed] and cleared," Wimmer said. "You come up on cars so fast here, that it's good to be aware of it because at 180 or 190 miles an hour, if a guy's coming to pit road you really catch him quick.

"I think things like that are real important because you can get yourself in trouble real quick, or at the least ultimately slow your lap down a lot, by checking up for somebody, where if you know about it you can get up in the high groove and get around them."

Wimmer said it didn't take him long to get up to speed, as it were, from above.

"It's been a while since I've been on a spotter's stand, but it's pretty neat, because you can see quite a bit from up there," Wimmer said. "Whenever you come to a new track you don't necessarily have to drive around it to learn quite a bit, and I've learned quite a bit just by being up there and spotting. Hopefully it will help out for our Busch test next week."

Wimmer is set to compete in nearly half the Busch Series' 35 races this season, splitting the seat of the No. 29 Chevy with RCR teammate Jeff Burton. Those cars have a two-day test at LVMS Feb. 5-6.

Wimmer also has a couple Nextel Cup races on tap in RCR's No. 33 Chevy, but team manager Mike Dillon said the team would like to expand that schedule, sponsorship permitting.

At any rate, Wimmer said the perspective he gained from the spotter's stand was one he could use, not only when the Busch Series returns to the dauntingly fast, reconfigured high-banked 1.5-mile oval; but also everywhere else he races.

"Here, it looks like it takes a little while to get going with the [harder] tires," Wimmer said. "That was one of the things, in the early morning with the cooler temperatures, it seemed like people would go out and were running real quick right off the bat -- but the cars didn't have a lot of grip and the cars were sliding around a lot.

"I think it's just important to ease into these things. The track's going to take a lot of rubber by the time we get out here [to race] and the weather will probably be quite a bit different, so I think you've just got to get a car that feels pretty comfortable and work on some stuff -- and when you come back is when you've really got to go for speed."

Considering his limited racing schedule this season -- which he isn't complaining about -- Wimmer said he was open to any contingency, including more spotting.

"I don't know what the plans are right now, but I'd like to be up there when Burton's running the [Busch] car and things like that," Wimmer said. "You always need a lot of bodies in the pits and I'm not much help down here, so if I can help out by being in the spotter's stand I'll try to do that as much as I can."

Harvick said Wimmer's perspective as a fellow driver was a valuable one at this test, where seven drivers crashed eight cars as rock-hard tires and a bumpy surface led to dicey handling conditions.

"He just brings a lot of experience up there, as far as what other cars are doing," Harvick said. "He knows what you're looking for and what you're paying attention to. He did a lot of what my normal spotter would have done, but it does help to have someone who's driven up there, to help you out."

Wimmer said his experience over the two days gave him a new appreciation for the job done by his Busch spotter Rocky Ryan, whom he worked with when he won five Busch Series races at Bill Davis Racing.

"It was a lot of fun," Wimmer said. "Todd Berrier [crew chief] and the guys just do so many neat things with these cars and Kevin and his communication is really good, so it's fun to listen to.

"It's pretty neat [spotting for his friend, Harvick]. I take a lot of corner times and do a lot of things, give him a little bit of input on what I think might help him and so far, so good [because] his car's been real fast.

"Kevin's been real instrumental in getting these cars where they're at -- and Jeff and Clint [Bowyer], too. They've got such a good communication level, they drive these cars and all these cars are real similar.

"So I just listen to those guys a lot and the changes that they do and what they're feeling in the car -- and so far when I've gotten in the car I've felt the same things, and have said the same things, so it's really good to have all our drivers working on the same page and doing the same things.

"That's really what makes the team strong, is when everybody's on the same page and has the same communication."

Dillon, who has earned high marks in his stints atop the spotter's stand for a number of drivers, confirmed that he would spot for Wimmer's Cup starts, as Ryan is Burton's Nextel Cup spotter. He also predicted Wimmer would "win some Busch races this season."

From Nascar.com
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