Kevin Harvick is going to make a lot of fans emotional during a NASCAR Cup Series exhibition race. He is bringing back the No. 29 for a special event in May.
Harvick made the announcement during an appearance on “NASCAR Race Hub.” He looked back at his first-ever win, which took place at Atlanta Motor Speedway, and then he revealed that he will bring back the white and red scheme that he took to Victory Lane. This time, he will showcase it during the All-Star Race at North Wilkesboro Speedway.
As Harvick revealed, he will have the No. 29 on the door of his Stewart-Haas Racing Ford instead of the No. 4. He will have a classic Busch Light logo that dates back to the 2001 season instead of the GM Goodwrench logos, but that will not lessen the importance of this tribute. This will still be a scheme that Harvick used after he took over the second RCR Cup car following Dale Earnhardt’s death.
“When I sat in the 29 for the first time, it really wasn’t by choice, but I definitely wouldn’t have done it any differently,” Harvick said in a press release. “Dale’s passing changed our sport forever, and it changed my life forever and the direction it took.
“Looking back on it now, I realize the importance of getting in the Cup car, and then I wound up winning my first race at Atlanta in the 29 car after Dale’s death. The significance and the importance of keeping that car on the racetrack and winning that race early at Atlanta – knowing now what it meant to the sport, and just that moment in general of being able to carry on – was so important.
Multiple Organizations Had To Get Involved
Bringing back the red and white scheme and putting Busch Light logos on it was only part of the process. Stewart-Haas Racing and Harvick also had to get permission to use a number associated with Richard Childress Racing. This meant that they had to get team owner Richard Childress on board.
“I walked into the meeting, and I told them that’s what I wanted to do,” Harvick explained on March 16. “And it was my idea. I walked in and I said, ‘Hey, here’s what I want to do,’ and everybody from SHR is like, ‘Let’s make it happen. But who is going to call Richard?'”
Harvick was the one that made the call, and he was met with support. Childress made it clear that his former driver had his blessing to bring back the No. 29 for the All-Star Race at North Wilkesboro Speedway.
“He said, ‘Kevin, you can do whatever you want,'” Harvick continued. “‘We’re in full support and you’ve had a great career and you did a lot for RCR.’ And he did a lot for me, and I can’t wait to take that picture with Richard and the crew chiefs and all the people that I worked with from RCR at North Wilkesboro that night.”
The 2001 Season Featured Celebrations & Emotional Moments
Harvick entered the 2001 season with the goal of winning the Busch Series — now Xfinity Series — championship while driving for Richard Childress Racing. However, his life completely changed after the Daytona 500 and Earnhardt’s death.
Childress chose Harvick to take over the second car while changing the number from the 3 to the 29. The California native thus had to pull double duty in both series while facing immense pressure.
Harvick rose to the occasion. He won five races in the Busch Series and captured the championship over Jeff Green and Jason Keller. More importantly, he delivered a strong season in the No. 29.
Harvick won his first two career Cup Series races, and he only posted one DNF due to an engine issue. Despite only starting 35 of the 36 races, he still went on to finish ninth in the championship standings.