Kevin Harvick’s victory in the AAA Texas 500 Sunday (November 3) tied the driver with former NASCAR competitor and boss Tony Stewart on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series’ all-time wins list.
Harvick led the final 21 laps, edging teammate Aric Almirola by a margin of 1.594 seconds. It was Harvick’s fourth win of 2019 and the 49th of his career.
“I’m excited about the fact that he’s going to far surpass this landmark,” Stewart said of Harvick’s win. “But I’m really proud that the night that he did tie it that it’s on a night that was so significant.”
Harvick, the 2014 champion, only trails fellow past champions Jimmie Johnson (83) and Kyle Busch (55) in victories among active drivers.
“To me, that’s the most rewarding thing is seeing the company continue to thrive and win races in different rules packages, big motors, tapered spacers, big spoilers, little spoilers, Fords, Chevrolets, Stewart-Haas Racing has been in Victory Lane, and we’ve been fortunate to win races with all those different scenarios,” Harvick said.
“In the end, that comes down to people. You’re only as good as the people that you have around you.”
If Harvick can earn one more points-awarding victory in the MENCS, he will become the 14th driver in NASCAR history to score 50 or more victories.
The next five drivers ahead of Harvick on the Cup Series wins list are Ned Jarrett (50), Junior Johnson (50), Lee Petty (54), Kyle Busch (55) and Rusty Wallace (55).
The most recent driver to hit the 50-win mark was Kyle Busch at Richmond Raceway in September of 2018.
The first driver to earn 50 wins in the Cup Series was Lee Petty at Asheville-Weaverville Speedway in April 1960.
Two races remain in the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season.
The next race is the Bluegreen Vacations 500 at ISM Raceway (Phoenix) scheduled for Sunday, November 10.
I am a co-owner and reporter for TheRacingExperts.com.