Kevin Harvick’s 23rd season will be his last as a full-time competitor in NASCAR.
Harvick, a 2014 Cup champion, has 60 race victories and 13 consecutive playoff appearances. He has signature wins at the Daytona 500, Coca-Cola 600, Brickyard 400 and Southern 500, among others, and also captured championships in the Xfinity Series in 2001 and 2006.
“All I’ve ever wanted to do is race,” the 47-year-old Harvick said in a video on Twitter. “It started when I was 5, and unbelievably by the time I was 25, I was in the NASCAR Cup Series. I’ve called NASCAR’s premier series my home for the last 22 years.
“I’ve seen a lot, and I’ve done a lot, and I’m grateful for the opportunity.
“I’m always ready for a new season. It presents new challenges and it forces you to find new ways outsmart and outrun the competition. But come November when the checkered flag drops on the season finale in Phoenix, it will also be my final race as a NASCAR Cup Series driver. It’s time to call time, to enjoy all that we’ve achieved as a race team and to savor it with the ones who have made this journey possible.”
Days after the fatal crash in 2001, Harvick was thrust onto the national auto racing scene as Dale Earnhardt’s replacement.
Harvick’s last win came on Aug. 14, 2022, his second straight victory in the Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond Raceway.
“I competed against Kevin for a long time and I was so happy to finally have him a part of our race team,” said Tony Stewart, co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing. “He’s incredibly reliable — consistent and calculated on the track with a drive to always be better. That’s what you want in a teammate. He knows what he needs to be successful, and his will to win helped elevate our entire company.”
Harvick said he will turn his attention to his wife, DeLana and children Keelan and Piper. Keelan, 10, is now karting on the international level, while Piper, 5, is wheeling a go-kart of her own.
“In the last year, I think I’ve seen Keelan race three times while he’s been in Europe,” Harvick said, per StewartHaasRacing.com. “I go to the go-kart track with Piper and she makes twice as many strides in a day while I’m there than she would in a day when I’m not there. It takes a lot of time to organize the level of racing they’re doing, and to be around that is important to me.”