Season Review: Kevin Harvick

Kevin Harvick

"It was a championship effort. Just came up a little bit short." (Photo: Getty Images)

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2017 Race-by-Race Results | 2017 Detailed Statistics

Kevin Harvick made it to the Championship 4 race at Homestead-Miami Speedway to cap his 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season.

The Stewart-Haas Racing driver came up short of his bid for a second series title but still turned in a stellar effort to finish third in the final point standings.

“Well, I think when you look at it from the inside out and all the work that everybody went through, the preparation that we went through to get to these playoffs was second to none,” Harvick said after his fourth place finish in the season-ending Ford EcoBoost 400.

Kevin Harvick“It was a championship effort. Just came up a little bit short. Congratulations to Martin (Truex Jr.). Those guys have been the dominant car all year. To go win the race and make it happen at the end, they were able to get their car better and win the championship.” 

Harvick ended the campaign with a pair of victories, 14 top-five and 23 top-10 finishes.

He scored his first win of the season at Sonoma Raceway in June when he took the checkered flag in the Toyota/Save Mart 250. Harvick combined a fast car and some pit strategy to score his 36th career Cup win.

“It is a great day,” he said in Victory Lane.  “It finally all came together and we were able to not have any cautions there at the end. (Crew chief) Rodney (Childers) had great strategy and I was able to take care of the car and get out front. I felt like the 78 (Martin Truex Jr.) was the car we had to race and then he had problems and from there we were in control.”

Harvick advanced into the playoffs thanks to his Sonoma win but struggled some during the end of the regular season. He was able to get things headed in the right direction once the playoff schedule rolled around and advanced through the first two rounds.

But it took a win at Texas Motor Speedway in the third round to secure a spot in the Championship 4. Harvick did it in impressive style, getting around Truex Jr. in the waning laps to take the checkered flag in the AAA Texas 500.

Kevin Harvick"Damn, it’s good to be in Victory Lane here in Texas,” Harvick said after getting around Truex Jr. with just nine laps to go. “I knew I had a really good car. I knew I had to do something different. I started driving a whole lot deeper in (Turn) 1—a whole lot deeper. I started doing that earlier in the race, but I was afraid I didn’t have the brakes to continue to do that all day. So I waited until the end and was able to get on the outside of Martin and got him loose and brushed across the back of him and was able to get by on the outside down there.”

Harvick had his opportunity to win a second title in the season finale at Homestead, but ultimately finished behind champion Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch to wind up third in the final standings.

“Just really proud of everybody on my team, and they did a great job getting us to this point and having a chance, and gave it all we had right up until the end,” Harvick said after the last checkered flag of the season waved in Miami. “Some points were good, some points were bad, and in the end it just wasn't quite good enough.”

Click to View Season Reviews for Each Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoff Driver

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