Kevin Set To Retire
By: Andrew N
One of the sports all-time greats, the man known as “The Closer, 47-year-old Bakersfield, California native Kevin Harvick will kick off his final campaign next month after 22 seasons in the NASCAR Cup Series. Harvick, the 2014 Cup Champion and winner of 60 races (9th most all-time) first broke into the sport driving trucks, but it was in the Xfinity Series (formerly known as the Busch Series) where he first found consistent success.
Then, suddenly, in February of 2001, following the tragic passing of Dale Earnhardt at the 2001 Daytona 500, Harvick was thrust into the sports’ highest level at the age of 25. Driving a renumbered #29 car after team owner Richard Childress decided to no longer use Earnhardt’s iconic #3, he would go on to win his first race in just his third start, in what is still to this day one of the sports’ most thrilling finishes, edging out Jeff Gordon at the line at Atlanta Motor Speedway by just 0.006 seconds.
Harvick would win 23 races in total with Richard Childress Racing before making the move to Stewart-Haas Racing in 2014 where he would immediately win his first championship, and where he has won a total of 37 races as well as the 2020 regular season title.
Harvick has also added 47 wins and two championships in the Xfinity Series as well as 14 wins in trucks. His 121 total national series wins puts him third all-time, behind only “The King” Richard Petty with 200 (all in Cup Series) and Kyle Busch with 224 (60 Cup, 102 Xfinity, 62 Truck). To this point, Harvick’s last win came at Richmond Raceway last August, which was his 2nd consecutive win of the season following a winless 2021.
Kevin will depart the #4 Busch Beer Ford after this season and invest his time in the racing careers of his children, particularly his son Keelan Harvick. Harvick, along with Dale Earnhardt, Jr, Jeff Burton and Team Trackhouse owner Justin Marks recently acquired ownership of CARS Tour, an asphalt late-model series that competes in the Southeast United States.
Said team owner Tony Stewart: “I want Kevin to savor every lap this season, to compete like hell and to take it all in. He’s made all of us at Stewart-Haas Racing incredibly proud and we want to make his last season his best season.”
When he’s not on the track, Harvick runs a sports management company – “Kevin Harvick Incorporated (KHI) Management” – with his wife Delana. Some of KHI Management’s highest profile clients are NASCAR Drivers Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Harrison Burton and Ryan Preece, as well as MMA fighters Miesha Tate and Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone. KHI Management also sponsors professional golfers James Hahn, Vaughn Taylor and Chesson Hadley. Formerly, the company also used to endorsement country music star Jake Owen. Stewart-Haas Racing has not yet announced who would be taking over the #4 car in 2024