Kevin Harvick, Stewart-Haas Racing, NASCAR (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick’s future beyond the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season remains uncertain, but a potential landing spot has emerged for 2024.
Back in February 2020, Kevin Harvick signed a contract extension to remain with Stewart-Haas Racing as the driver of the #4 Ford through the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season, and he hasn’t signed a new deal since.
At 46 years old, Harvick is the oldest active full-time driver in the Cup Series, and the 2023 season is set to be his 23rd season as a full-time driver. He hasn’t missed a start since 2002.
The 2021 season was his first winless season since 2009, and while he managed to find victory lane twice in 2022 to prevent the 2022 season from becoming his first without a playoff berth since 2009, he still finished in 15th place in the standings, his worst finish since 2009. He was eliminated in the opening round of the playoffs.
Even without the 100-point penalty he was issued during the playoffs, he only would have finished in 12th place, which still would have been his worst finish since 2009.
Many have speculated that the 2023 season could be his last. In fact, he revealed last offseason that the original plan was for him to retire after the 2021 season.
Should that be the case, Fox Sports has emerged as a potential landing spot for Harvick in 2024.
Harvick has long been viewed as the type of driver who fits in well in a broadcast booth, and he has demonstrated that a few times as a part of the booth for Xfinity Series races in recent years.
Instead of replacing Jeff Gordon, who stepped away from the Fox Sports booth after six seasons following the 2021 season, with a full-time analyst alongside lead announcer Mike Joy and color commentator Clint Bowyer, Fox opted to fill the third spot with several individuals throughout their portion of the 2022 schedule.
According to Sports Business Journal‘s Adam Stern, they plan to take the same approach again in 2023, and while their reasoning was not revealed, this move effectively keeps that third spot open for 2024 if the 2023 season is indeed Harvick’s last behind the wheel.
.@FoxSports is expected to continue to rotate its third booth position in 2023, versus having a full-time analyst join Mike Joy and Clint Bowyer.
🔲 While Fox's reasoning is unclear, this would give it the chance to possibly bring in @KevinHarvick in '24 if he retires after '23. pic.twitter.com/mhzRUFp2m5
— Adam Stern (@A_S12) November 22, 2022
Harvick leaving Stewart-Haas Racing after the 2023 season would also inevitably open up the seat of the #4 Ford, meaning that the team would need to make a driver change for the seventh time in the last eight offseasons.