Kevin Harvick has started seven NASCAR Cup Series races in 2020 and has one win, five top-fives and has finished in the top-10 at every one.
It took a late caution and a heck of a drive by the veteran to keep that streak alive in Sunday night’s Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.
Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Busch Light Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), was off all night and was running between 12th and 16th during much of the race.
But on lap 399, William Byron spun and brought out a caution while Harvick was running 14th. He came to pit road, where crew chief Rodney Childers called for four ties and fuel, and Harvick restarted 13th.
In two laps, Harvick moved from 13th to sixth. After the race, Jimmie Johnson’s car was disqualified, moving Harvick up to fifth.
A lot of teams would have given up, but Harvick, Childers and the 4 team have been together for seven years and expect to win. The fifth-place result is nice, but this team expects to win every race.
So Childers and Harvick will come up with a plan for Wednesday night’s 310-mile race at Charlotte. And if Harvick leads 64 laps, he will have led 10,000 laps at SHR.
He’s led 14,362 in his career and trails 10th-place Kyle Busch, who has led 17,445, and Jimmie Johnson, who is ninth with 18,862 laps led, on the all-time list.
It’s Wednesday night under the light at Charlotte. And a victory would make it even sweeter.
KEVIN HARVICK, Driver of the No. 4 Busch Light Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing:
Talk about Sunday’s race.
“We just missed the handling and had to battle all night trying to make it better. We left with a top-five somehow and we will be better on Wednesday.”
Another Wednesday-night race and the fourth race in 12 days. Can you talk about that?
“For me, it’s just gonna purely be the interaction, with not being able to have the interaction with the people, and communication will just be drastically different – how much you’re around people, how close you are to people and things of that nature. I’ve started races with no practice. We went through 9/11 and had a race cancelled and had things different, but this is just so drastically different that you just have to approach it drastically different with an open mind to know that there are gonna be things – before you even get there you have to know that there are going to be things drastically different than the way it was before, and just not be frustrated with things that don’t go right, things that are different.”