DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – A NASCAR feud that has simmered for nearly five years boiled over again after Saturday’s Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway.
After contact with Joey Logano sent Kevin Harvick’s No. 4 Chevrolet into the wall on the penultimate lap of the 75-lap exhibition event, Harvick retaliated by slamming Logano’s No. 22 Ford on the cooldown circuit.
With his helmet still on, Harvick, who finished 11th, approached Logano in the pits. The Team Penske driver, who was sixth, responded by screaming vulgarities at Harvick and tried to lunge at his rival before the drivers were separated by their crews.
Harvick said he owed Logano for a similar move in last October’s race at Talladega Superspeedway that he also was unhappy about it. The defending series champion took a shot at Logano entering last November’s championship finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, calling him a “moving chicane” at Talladega.
“Joey thinks he was helping but you can’t just drive somebody straight in the corner and the fence,” Harvick said. “He kind of did the same thing to me at Talladega. I told him, “the karma train is coming after you,” and it bit him right in the ass. You can’t do that. … I just didn’t appreciate getting straight drove in the wall.”
Logano dismissed those charges as rubbish and said Harvick simply lost the handle on his car after getting a push down the backstretch.
“He’s just Kevin,” Logano said. “He’s an instigator, right? It’s the same thing he does every other time he talks to someone. It’s the same old crap. It just happens all the time. It’s no big deal.”
It isn’t the first time they’ve had a difference of opinion about a racing incident. Logano once suggested that Harvick’s wife, DeLana, “wears the firesuit in the family” after the drivers had a postrace altercation at Pocono Raceway in June 2010, and they also had a memorable encounter after an Xfinity race at Bristol Motor Speedway.
Harvick spent much of last year’s championship news conference aiming zingers at Logano, and the sniping continued after last night’s unofficial opener to the 2015 season.
“I’ve had a few issues with him on the speedways, and you can’t just take your head off and detach it and throw it on the floorboard and not use your brain,” he said. “It’s an all-star race, but you still have to have some common sense.
“Like I told him last year, that kind of stuff catches up with you. And it caught up with him last year.”