Can Kevin Harvick Be A Spoiler This Week At Homestead?

Kevin Harvick

Kevin Harvick finds himself in an unfamiliar position as he arrives at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway for Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series finale.
Since the inception of the elimination format in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship playoff in 2014, the driver of the No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) has never come to Homestead out of the Championship 4. He advanced to the final race in both 2014 and 2015, winning the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship and finishing runner-up to Kyle Busch in 2015.
However, this year’s 10-race Chase did not go as planned for the Bakersfield, California native after he suffered several setbacks in each round, but managed to advance by winning a race in each of the first two rounds and remaining in contention until his fourth-place finish last weekend at Phoenix International Raceway knocked him out of the Round of 8.
Now, Harvick and the No. 4 team have only one priority when it comes to finishing out their season – win. The team has scored four wins through the first 35 points-paying Sprint Cup races of 2016. One additional win in the season finale would equal his single-season best, which he accomplished by winning five races each in 2006 and 2014.
This season, Harvick has managed to win races on the half-mile oval at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, the mile ovals at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon and Phoenix, and the 1.5-mile Kansas Speedway in Kansas City.
The No. 4 Jimmy John’s team finished first and second at Homestead the past two seasons, capturing the win in 2014 by .500 of a second over runner-up Ryan Newman in 2014, and finishing runner-up to 2015 champion Kyle Busch by 1.552 seconds in 2015.
Harvick has only finished outside the top-10 at Homestead twice in his 15 career Sprint Cup starts. He has one win, three runner-up finishes, two third-place finishes and eight consecutive top-10s with an average finish of 7.2. In the last 10 Sprint Cup races at Homestead, Harvick has the best average finish at 6.1, and his 964 points rank second only to Carl Edwards’ 985.
Harvick and the No. 4 team are motivated to finish on a high note and would love to do that by standing in victory lane one final time to close out the 2016 season. 
KEVIN HARVICK, Driver of the No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing:

With one final race left in the 2016 season, how would you define your season?
“That’s a tough question. We’ve done a lot of good things – we’ve won four races, led a lot of laps and put ourselves in contention nearly every week. We also ran into some trouble in the Chase and our season isn’t ending the way we would have liked, holding the big trophy at the end. I think the thing I am most pleased with or proud of is how our Jimmy John’s team went down fighting until the very last second last weekend at Phoenix. Just for the fact that we were off a little bit the whole weekend, but no one gave up and we fought until the very end. That says a lot about this team and the character of the guys on it. We have a lot of things to look forward to as a team and a win this weekend in Homestead would definitely get us headed in the right direction as we head into 2017.”
What will it be like to race with Tony Stewart in his final race?
“Tony and I have been friends for a long time – long before I drove for this race team. He is a first-class person, business owner and one of my best friends. I came to Stewart-Haas Racing to race with Tony as a teammate. I’ve been fortunate in the last three years to be able to do that. He has been such a big influence in the sport of auto racing – not just NASCAR, but auto racing as a whole. He’s raced in grassroots series, World of Outlaws, IndyCar, NASCAR, you name it. He’s been a track owner, series owner, promoter and helped advance the safety of the sport. His voice in the auto racing world carries a lot of weight and his contributions are so vast that it’s really incredible. I’m lucky to call him my boss, teammate and friend. It’s going to be a fun but emotional weekend for a lot of people, myself included. We want to see him run competitively and have fun racing with all of us in this series one last time. It’s going to be a special night.”



Jimmy John’s Racing Team Report

Round 36 of 36 – Sprint Cup Series Finale – Homestead-Miami Speedway

At-Track PR Contact: Ryan Barry, True Speed Communication (704-500-1553,

Danica Patrick – No. 10 TaxAct Chevrolet SS
Tony Stewart – No. 14 Always a Racer/Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS
Kurt Busch – No. 41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Chevrolet SS


Primary Team Members:

Driver: Kevin Harvick

Hometown: Bakersfield, California


Crew Chief: Rodney Childers

Hometown: Mooresville, North Carolina


Car Chief: Robert Smith

Hometown: Whitewater, Wisconsin


Engine Builder: Hendrick Motorsports

Headquarters: Concord, North Carolina


Engine Specialist: Jereme Jackson

Hometown: Lincolnton, North Carolina


Spotter: Tim Fedewa

Hometown: Holt, Michigan

Over-The-Wall Crew Members:

Gas Man: Justin White

Hometown: Lynnville, Tennessee


Front Tire Changer: Eric Maycroft

Hometown: Algonquiin, Illinois


Second Gas Man: Marc Wulf

Hometown: Omaha, Nebraska


Front Tire Carrier: Matt Holzbaur

Hometown: New Egypt, New Jersey


Windshield: Aaron Kuehn

Hometown: Kensington, Connecticut


Rear Tire Changer: Daniel Smith

Hometown: Concord, North Carolina


Jackman: Stan Doolittle

Hometown: Ninety Six, South Carolina


Rear Tire Carrier: Mike “Shrek” Morneau

Hometown: Oxford, Maine

Road Crew Members:

Truck Drivers: Rick Hodges and Stephen Mitchell

Hometowns: Raleigh, North Carolina, and Woodville, Ohio, respectively


Tire Specialist: Dustin Keath

Hometown: Reading, Pennsylvania


Shock Specialist: Mike McCarville

Hometown: Kensington, Prince Edward Island, Canada


Engineers: Dax Gerringer and Billy Keubler

Hometowns: Gibsonville, North Carolina, and Saline, Michigan,respectively


Mechanics: Richie Bean and Allen Mincey

Hometown: Bradford, Vermont, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida,respectively


Fuel Runner: Evan Kureczka

Hometown: Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Chassis Information – Chassis No. 4-929:
Kevin Harvick will pilot the No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS built on Chassis No. 4-929 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series finale Sunday at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway. Chassis No. 4-929 made its Sprint Cup debut at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway in October, when it won the pole with lap of 27.547 seconds at 196.029 mph, led 12 laps, but failed to finish the race due to a mechanical issue.​


Homestead-Miami Speedway Notes of Interest:

• Earning It Since 2014: Harvick is in his 16th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season and his third at Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) with crew chief Rodney Childers at the helm. In the 106 Sprint Cup events since their pairing at the beginning of 2014, Harvick and Childers combined to produce 12 victories, 10 poles, 53 top-five finishes and 74 top-10s; led 5,736 laps; won the 2014 Sprint Cup title; and finished runner-up in 2015 to champion Kyle Busch.


• Trophies of 2016: Harvick is one of 13 Sprint Cup winners through the first 35 races of 2016. He scored his first win of the season March 13 at Phoenix International Raceway in one of the closest finishes in series history, when he beat runner-up Carl Edwards to the finish line by .01 of a second. He scored his second win of the season in the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, where he started 24th, led 128 laps and beat runner-up Ricky Stenhouse Jr., by 1.933 seconds. He scored his third win of the season Sept. 25 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, where he started 19th, led eight laps and finished .442 of a second ahead of runner-up Matt Kenseth. He scored his fourth and most recent win of the season on October 16 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, where he started 11th, led 74 laps and beat runner-up Edwards by 1.183 seconds.
• Survive and Advance: Harvick finished the regular season with 876 points – more than any other driver. It marked the second consecutive season he has led the Sprint Cup points after the 26-race regular season. He was eliminated from the Chase for the Sprint Cup last weekend with a fourth-place finish at Phoenix International Raceway. His Oct. 16 win in the Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas locked him into the Chase for the Sprint Cup Round of 8. He advanced to the Round of 12 by winning the Bad Boy Off Road 300 at New Hampshire Sept. 25.
• First or Second: Since joining SHR at the beginning of 2014, Harvick and Childers have teamed to score 35 top-two finishes – 12 wins and 23 runner-up efforts in 107 total races. The pairing has finished either first or second in nearly 33 percent of the Sprint Cup races since the start of 2014.
• 1,000 Laps Led for the Third Consecutive Season: Harvick has led 1,305 laps through the first 35 points-paying races of 2016. He has now led 1,000 laps for a third consecutive season. He has led at least one lap in 21 of 35 points-paying Sprint Cup events this season. Prior to joining SHR in 2014, Harvick’s season-high was 895 laps led in 2006.
• Harvick in the Sprint Cup Series at Homestead-Miami: The Sprint Cup Season Finale will mark Harvick’s 16th career Sprint Cup start at Homestead. He has one win (2014), seven top-five finishes and 13 top-10s at the 1.5-mile oval. The 40-year-old driver has led 236 laps, has an average starting position of 13.3, an average finish of 7.2, and has completed all but one lap he’s contested there (4,009 of 4,010). His lone win at Homestead helped secure the 2014 Sprint Cup championship.
• Harvick in the Xfinity Series at Homestead: In eight Xfinity Series starts at Homestead, Harvick has one win (2004), one pole (2006), three top-five finishes, five top-10s and has led 401 laps. He has an average start of 9.4 and an average finish of 11.6.
• Harvick in the Camping World Truck Series at Homestead: In six Camping World Truck Series starts at Homestead, Harvick has one win (2009), four top-five finishes, four top-10s and has led 141 laps. He has an average start of 10.2 and an average finish of 8.5.
• Career Totals: Harvick has 35 wins, 153 top-five finishes, 283 top-10s and 16 poles in 573 career Sprint Cup starts heading into Homestead.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.