Monday, January 21, 2013

Kevin Harvick: "Change can't be bad."

   Kevin Harvick remained tight-lipped about where he would be racing in 2014 but insisted he planned to make his final season at Richard Childress Racing a “character-building year.”

    “I want to go out and have fun and hopefully leave this place as good as it was when I got here if not better,” said Harvick, who is expected to join Stewart-Haas Racing next year.

   “You want to do everything to participate in everything you can do to make the cars as fast as you can. I have a lot of friends here and I want to leave here with it that way.”

   Harvick was the only RCR driver to win a Cup race in 2012 and that was late in the season after he had reunited with crew chief Gil Martin. Martin and Harvick will work together again this season.

    Harvick, 36, doesn’t believe he or his No. 29 team have anything to prove to detractor who think they can’t find success in a “lame duck” season.

   “The biggest thing to prove is who you are as people,” he said. “The bottom line is the cars have to run good, whether it’s this year or the years to come. There is a lot of effort being poured into that.”

   Harvick began his career with RCR in 1999, running the fall race at Rockingham in what is now known as the Nationwide Series. He completed 34 laps before engine failure sent him to the garage.

    In 2001, he took over driving duties for the Sprint Cup team of Dale Earnhardt after Earnhardt was killed in a last-lap wreck in the Daytona 500.

   “It’s been a great journey but sometimes you just need a change in pace to keep the enthusiasm where it needs to be. It’s made my enthusiasm high for this year,” Harvick said.

   “I think my first race with Richard was in October 1999 and we’ve won Nationwide championships, 19 Cup races, 30 to 40 Nationwide races, Truck races. We’ve been through a lot of different situations.

   “Change can’t be bad.”

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