Kevin Harvick heads to the Go Bowling 235 NASCAR Cup Series race on the Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway road course with just 1.25 tracks left to conquer on the NASCAR schedule.
How is this possible?
After his victory June 27 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway, the first of his career at the track, Harvick finished fourth at Kentucky, where he still hasn’t seen victory lane. He also hasn’t won on the “roval” at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway, which first appeared on the schedule in 2018.
Harvick did win the 2011 and 2013 Coca-Cola 600 and the 500-mile fall race in 2014 on the Charlotte oval.
Then NASCAR added the Daytona road course to the 2020 schedule and that portion of the track has never hosted a NASCAR race. But Harvick is victorious on the Daytona oval, having won the 2007 Daytona 500 and the 2010 Coke Zero 400.
So why the number 1.25? No reason, but the only facility where Harvick has never won a Cup race is Kentucky. So the .25 represents the two road courses within their respective ovals at Daytona and Charlotte.
Harvick has started just one race on the Daytona road course – the February 2002 edition of the Rolex 24-hour endurance race. He was part of a four-driver team with Rick Carelli, John Metcalf and Davy Lee Liniger. Harvick qualified the car second in class and drove early in the race, but after a driver change, the engine expired just 123 laps into the race and the team finished 69th overall and eighth in the American Grand Touring (AGT) class.
Tony Stewart, Harvick’s current boss, also drove in that race.
Harvick will pilot the No. 4 Busch Beer National Forest Foundation Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) Sunday at Daytona. He’ll have the support of the National Forest Foundation, as well.
The National Forest Foundation is the leading organization inspiring personal and meaningful connections to America’s National Forests, the centerpiece of the country’s public lands.
Working on behalf of the American public, the foundation leads forest conservation efforts and promotes responsible recreation. The organization operates under the belief that these lands, and all they provide, are an American treasure and are vital to the health of communities nationwide.
Harvick had the National Forest Foundation on his car last year at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon when he started 14th and finished first. He’s hoping to do the same this year on the Daytona road course. Busch Beer will also donate $1,000 for every lap Harvick leads this weekend, up to $30,000.
It’s been more than 18 years since Harvick raced the road course at Daytona. But he’s proven he can win anywhere and is looking for career victory number 56, which would tie him with Kyle Busch for ninth on the all-time NASCAR Cup Series wins list.