Most NASCAR driver nicknames mean what they say. Kyle Busch really is “Rowdy.” Dale Earnhardt was “The Intimidator” on the track during his racing days. Richard Petty was, is, and always will be “The King” of NASCAR.
But, when Kevin Harvick was slapped with the “Happy Harvick” moniker, it was definitely more than a little bit tongue in cheek. The 22-year NASCAR vet is notorious for getting into his fair share of scraps over the years, both verbal and physical.
Here, we’ll look at five times that Harvick used the power of the post-race interview mic to target his rivals.
5 Angry Kevin Harvick Interviews
Kevin Harvick vs. Ricky Rudd
Heading into the fall race at Richmond International Raceway back in 2003, Kevin Harvick was sitting at a solid third place in the point standings. That would all change after Rudd sent Harvick’s No. 29 car into the wall, causing him to finish 16th.
This led to a heated post-race physical altercation between Harvick, Rudd and both of their crews. After the dust had somewhat settled, Harvick continued to vent his frustration in a brief on-track interview.
“Ricky Rudd took a g**d*** cheap shot at us,” Harvick said. “If he’s going to take a cheap shot, he’ll get one back, I promise you that.”
Harvick ended up getting fined $35,000 for the “use of improper language” and for the contact he made with Rudd on pit road.
Kevin Harvick vs. Greg Biffle
Back in the early 2000s, Kevin Harvick wasn’t the type to make a threat and not follow through with it. So, when Greg Biffle bumped the back of Harvick’s car and sent him into the wall at the spring race at Bristol in 2002, Harvick was determined to talk the talk and walk the walk.
“I’ve always said Greg Biffle was a good guy, but he’s the most impatient thing I’ve ever seen,” Harvick told reporters while he was headed to the care center for a checkup. “I will be waiting for him when he gets out.”
And wait he did. Once Biffle’s car pulled into pit road, Harvick leapt over both the barrier and Biffle’s car to get into Biffle’s face. He was later pulled away by Biffle’s jackman and pit crew coach, who Harvick later referred to as “the biggest dude I’ve ever seen on pit road.”
As a result of the incident, Harvick was fined $15,000 and placed on a five-month probation.
Kevin Harvick vs. Joe Nemechek
“He can take that and shove it when the sun don’t shine.”
At least that’s what Kevin Harvick meant to say about Joe Nemechek following their infamous All-Star Race qualifying dust-up in 2005, but Harvick’s frustration hilariously turned the threat into somewhat of a tongue-twister.
It all started after a chain-reaction crash caused by Tony Stewart that ended up sending Nemechek slamming into Harvick. While Nemechek apologized to Harvick in their post-race confrontation and tried to clarify that he didn’t start the whole thing, Harvick was still salty about what Nemechek had said about him after that year’s Daytona 500.
Maybe some folks could brush off someone else calling for their firing, but not Kevin Harvick.
Kevin Harvick vs. Kyle Busch
Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch have a longstanding feud that we could dedicate an entire article to. Though, when “Happy” called out “Rowdy” after a November 2011 truck race at Texas Motor Speedway, it was over an incident that had nothing to do with the two of them.
After Busch had wrecked out Ron Hornaday during the Friday night race, Harvick took his opportunity at the post-race press conference to call out Busch for his reckless driving and immaturity.
“He’s going to grow up or he’s going to have swollen eyes,” Busch said.
Just from the calmness of Harvick’s delivery, you could tell that he would’ve been ready to throw down if Busch attempted that stuff on him.
Kevin Harvick vs. Chase Elliott
Other than Kyle Larson’s spectacular racing, the Chase Elliott-Kevin Harvick feud was the talk of the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs.
That feud all started at the September night race at Bristol, where some aggressive racing resulted in a heated pit road confrontation with Elliott and Harvick getting right in each other’s faces.
With boos raining down on him, Harvick sniped at Elliott’s “chickens*** move.” Even at 46 years old, Harvick still knows how to ruffle those feathers.
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