(Cover Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
By Adam Carabine
In case you missed it, StatChat is counting down the days ‘til the 2023 Daytona 500. Every two days, we will have a new article featuring one of the 36 charters of 2022.
13th Place – Kevin Harvick – 2,225 pts
STEWART-HAAS RACING – FORD
2 Wins in 2022 – 2020 saw Kevin Harvick win nine times. A year later, he went winless for the first time in 11 years. 2022 put him back in the winning column, with a modest two wins. Considering that ’22 saw 19 different winners, two wins is nothing to be ashamed of. It was certainly a year of parity. Harvick’s two wins came back-to-back at Michigan and Richmond, the 23rd and 24th races of the season. This punched his ticket to the playoffs at just the right moment, as it wound up being extremely difficult to make your way in on points alone. (Just ask Martin Truex Jr.)
38.9% Being the Best Stewart-Haas Finisher in 2022 – Kevin Harvick races for Stewart-Haas Racing, which has four Cup Series drivers in their stable. In 2022, Kevin Harvick finished best of the four 38.9% of the races. While it may not seem like a high number, it was the highest of the four drivers. If it had been an equal share amongst the four, they would have each finished with 25%. Harvick and teammate Chase Briscoe made up the majority of the best finishes for SHR, combining for over 65% together.
7 DNFs in 2022 – Harvick is obviously a veteran driver, and knows how to keep his equipment clean. In his miraculous 9-win season in 2020, Harvick had 0 DNFs. Whether this is he and his team adjusting to the new Next-Gen car, or signs of Harvick starting to slip in his consistency, it’s hard to tell. His 7 DNFs tied him with seven other Cup Series chartered cars for 26th, which is not great for a driver in the playoffs. Perhaps his 13th place standings finish actually shows what he is able to do when his car makes it to the end of the race.
14.36 Average Finish in 2022 – Despite the two wins, the season was statistically a bit of a step back for Kevin Harvick. Two years removed from his best season ever (where he scored an Average Finish of 7.33), Harvick nearly doubled that number. This amounted to his 5th worst season by Average Finish (out of 22 full-time Cup Series seasons). No one knows for sure, but that may be a contributing factor to Harvick’s decision to hang up the gloves after the upcoming season.
46 Years Old – As the current oldest of the Cup Series drivers, Kevin Harvick has been around the longest. In fact, 2022 Rookie of the Year candidates Harrison Burton and Todd Gilliland were each less than a year old when Harvick made his debut in 2001. To say he’s been around the block is an understatement.
As mentioned above, it was announced not long ago that Kevin Harvick’s 2023 season will be his last full-time run in the Cup Series. He remains under contract with Stewart-Haas Racing and will finish his full-time career in the No. 4 Ford – a car that has been his home since 2014.
Coming up next in the Countdown to Daytona series – Austin Cindric!
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