Kevin Harvick now knows that for the fifth time in six tries, he’s heading to the Homestead-Miami Speedway with a shot at a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship. His win last Sunday at the Texas Motor Speedway assures that.
But, Harvick’s win last Sunday also put him into rare territory – he’s one victory shy of reaching 50 for his Cup career. That ties him with his boss Tony Stewart for 12th most ever.
Harvick, says that he and Stewart haven’t discussed the possibility of him passing his boss on the wins list, but they do talk about how much that they want to win races and championships overall.
“Well, we did all this, and the only conversations we talked about were that we want to win races and have a chance to win championships,” Harvick said of he and Stewart.
Harvick, notes how appreciated he is of Stewart’s efforts to make them a contender. When he left Richard Childress Racing following the 2013 season to jump to SHR, it was a big risk. His No. 4 team didn’t have anything – no trailer, no car, no team. It was built from scratch.
As we sit here today, 26 of Harvick’s 49 wins have come with SHR. He has more wins in less starts with SHR than he had in 13 years with RCR.
26 wins in 214 starts with SHR while having 23 wins in 466 starts with RCR.
“I think the faith he and his group put in letting us talk them into going out and hiring him and putting the faith in him and going out and hiring the guys that he wanted to hire when we bought the team, or when we built the team, we didn’t have a truck, we didn’t have a trailer, we didn’t have a racecar, and they let us do everything how we wanted from the very beginning,” Harvick continued. “You know, it’s – I mean, it’s kind of reshaped and molded and changed things at SHR, and last year, I mean, gosh, I don’t even know how many races we won as a team last year, but we won a bunch of races as four drivers.”
Another thing Harvick appreciates is that even with 26 wins and a championship with SHR, they’ve been dominant in multiple manufacturers with multiple different racing packages. Everything new thrown at them hasn’t mattered. They’ve remained a consistent championship level team.
“Really, to me, that’s the most rewarding thing, seeing the company continue to thrive and win races in different rules packages, big motors, tapered spacers, big spoilers, little spoilers, Fords, Chevrolets, Stewart-Haas Racing has been in victory lane, and we’ve been fortunate to win races with all those different scenarios.
“In the end, that comes down to people. You’re only as good as the people you have around you. Them letting us go out and build a team with people who came to Stewart-Haas Racing to be on that No. 4 car is really what started this whole thing, and now we’re, I don’t know, what are we, 26, 27 wins later, six years in. So it’s been a lot of fun. He’s so laid back and understands how the peaks and valleys go of this particular sport. I’m glad he was there on the night we were able to both be 49s. I guess that’s pretty cool.”