Harvick Wants To Stay At RCR

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Kevin Harvick has a reputation for liking to talk.

But for right now, Harvick isn't saying much about his NEXTEL Cup Series future.

While sources have reported Harvick and car owner Richard Childress have agreed to a contract extension and are working on details, all Harvick will say for now is that he'd like to stay with RCR.

"Yes, I would like to," Harvick said. "There is a seven-year relationship here that is first and foremost and the main priority to keep. I have a lot of friends here. I have a seven year relationship here and I think it is something that will be the first thing we try to work out."

Reports have the new Toyota-backed Red Bull Racing team making a run at Harvick. But Harvick has said that starting with a new team, new manufacturer and new model car from scratch isn't as appealing as his current role with an established team like RCR.

"It is going to be tough to start a team from scratch or to change teams to do that," he said. "But you can't ever rule anything out. I want to do what is best for my career; if that is what it takes, then that is what we will do. But the number one priority is to salvage the seven-year relationship and build on it."

With Childress out of the country on a hunting trip in Africa, nothing will be done in the new few days. But there is growing speculation that an announcement between Harvick and RCR will come by the end of the month with an announcement possibly as early as next weekend in Talladega.

Harvick won't confirm or deny his agreement with RCR is complete, but likes what has happened with the team in recent months.

"I think we have made some good additions to our race team," Harvick said. "I think our race team is on the same page and has been together for three years and that is what it takes to win a championship. I think the performance of the race cars has helped make that a little bit easier to see. It is something to where there are a lot of things that have changed and gotten better. It is the thing that we want to work out first and as long as all parties agree to do that, we will see what happens."

PISTONE'S PISTONS
All three current NEXTEL Cup Series manufacturers issued statements denying there is any intent to withdraw from NASCAR racing. A recent story on an automotive enthusiast website indicated one or more manufacturers were ready to pull the plug on any factory support for NASCAR racing as early as next season....Goodyear has slated a tire test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Monday and Tuesday of next week with Tony Stewart, Kasey Kahne and Elliott Sadler to take part in the session....NASCAR's "Car of Tomorrow" will get tested at Lowe's Motor Speedway immediately after the Coca-Cola 600 on May 30th and 31st....Speaking of Lowe's Motor Speedway, for the third straight year fans will choose an at-large driver for the 2006 NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge, which takes place May 20. Fans will have the opportunity to vote in one driver among the top 50 in NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series points who is not already on the list of eligible drivers for this year’s all-star event. Voting is now available through the following channels: On-line at www.nascar.com; by text messaging “NASCAR” to 7777 on a Sprint or Nextel web-enabled phone; trackside at the Nextel Experience; at participating Sprint and Nextel retail locations; and at Bass Pro Shop retail locations.


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