The Many Feuds of Kevin Harvick, Pt. 6: All Feuds Are Bigger in Texas
It's been two weeks, and I bet you thought the "Many Feuds of Kevin Harvick" were over, didn't you?
Of course they aren't, you silly fan girls and boys! Happy takes breaks during feuds, just as this writer took a break to write her extra exciting paper on Beowulf.
So, before I bore you any further with my high school days, let the feuding begin!
They say all things are bigger in Texas. For one crew member, taking his aggression out on Harvick, his wife DeLana, and a NASCAR official led to a big penalty.
The 2006 Dickies 500 at Texas Motor Speedway was a caution-filled event, with 12 putting drivers under the caution for 51 of the total 339 laps.
With only seven laps left, Harvick tapped Scott Riggs No. 10 Valvoline/Stanley's Dodge, and with Riggs unable to keep control of his car, he sped into the wall.
Riggs would finish 31st, with Happy taking his place in third. However, it was the off track antics of Riggs' crew that got the team in so much trouble.
Tensions between the two teams were high as both teams entered the garage area. An altercation between Craig Curione, the front tire carrier for Riggs, shoved Harvick and his wife, DeLana, to the ground. Along with them fell a NASCAR then NEXTEL Cup official, who suffered a severely sprained ankle.
The Harvicks were not injured.
Curione apparently ran away after the hit-and-run, but was eventually caught by Richard Childress Racing Director Mike Dillon, who escorted him to the NASCAR Hauler. In the hauler were the Harvicks, Richard Childress, Ray Evernham, Riggs' crew chief Rodney Childers, among others.
"They were just talking a little smack, which is normal, and then one of them came up and gave Kevin a push in the back," The Harvicks' personal relations representative Jan McCormick, Jr. said. "Kevin fell into DeLana and she fell into a NASCAR official and all three of them fell to the ground."
Harvick admitted he tapped Riggs, and was understandbly angry about the post-race incident.
"He was blocking all over the place, he wound up on the bottom. I got a good run on top, I got in back of him and spun him out," Harvick said. "Those guys decided to take matters in their own hands and trip my wife in front of the pit box and run her over. That was unnecessary, and I'm not happy about that."
Curione was indefinitely suspended by NASCAR and fined $10,000 the following week. Evernham Motorsports agreed with the sanctioning body's decision.
"After a comprehensive internal review of the post race incident between Kevin Harvick and a member of the No. 10 team, Valvoline Evernham Racing supports NASCAR's decision to indefinitely suspend the involved crew member.
"We apologize to Kevin and DeLana Harvick, NASCAR, our partners and our fans for this incident. The behavior demonstrated by the involved crew member was in violation of the Valvoline Evernham Racing Employee Code of Conduct and will not be tolerated. We concur with NASCAR's ruling and will not appeal the suspension or fine."
So, while Riggs and Harvick never actually traded blows themselves, it was a memorable weekend for Harvick and his many feuds.
Next week, we look at one of Happy's most famous feuds: one that crossed borders, led to cussing on TV and had Felix Sabates crying foul? Hmmm...
Until next time, fellow feud followers!
Thanks to Jayski, ESPN, USA Today, The Associated Press, Racing-Reference and the International Herald-Tribune for the comments, quotes and facts used in this piece.
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