Harvick to join JR Motorsports in 2014
October 14, 2013, Staff report, NASCAR.com
Kevin Harvick will continue to have a strong presence in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, but he'll drive for a new team in 2014. Harvick will compete in at least 12 Nationwide Series races next season with JR Motorsports, the team announced Monday in a release.
Harvick will pilot the Dale Earnhardt Jr.-owned team's No. 5 Chevrolet, an entry that has been fielded by seven different drivers this year. Brad Sweet has 14 starts in that entry this season, and Kasey Kahne has 11.
The driver lineup beyond Harvick is yet to be determined, the team announced.
Hunt Brothers Pizza is coming on as a primary sponsor for four of Harvick's races -- both events at Texas Motor Speedway, and one race at Charlotte Motor Speedway and Bristol Motor Speedway. The company also announced it would join Stewart-Haas Racing as an associate sponsor in 2014. Harvick will join SHR next year and drive the No. 4 Chevrolet.
"This is pretty cool to have Kevin a part of our team," Earnhardt Jr. said in the team's release. "I've known him for a long time. He's an incredible racer. He will be a huge asset to JR Motorsports, our sponsors and our fans. I'm grateful that he wants to drive our cars, and I'm grateful that Hunt Brothers Pizza is committed to Kevin and our race program. We're happy to have them."
Harvick has driven in at least 10 Nationwide Series races for the past 11 seasons. He was the series champion in 2001 and 2006, and ranks third on the all-time series win list with 40 victories, including nine in 2006. He also has 159 top-fives and 220 top-10s.
The veteran has driven the No. 33 car for Richard Childress Racing since 2012, and previously drove for RCR from 1999-2007. He's had sponsorship from Hunt Brothers for the past four years.
"As a long-time sponsor of Kevin, we're excited to make the move with him to JR Motorsports," said Keith Solsvig, vice president of marketing at Hunt Brothers Pizza. "Our working relationship has only gotten better over the years, and we are looking forward to another great season together."