Don’t dare ‘rib’ Kevin Harvick

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - AUGUST 12: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Mobil 1 Ford, drives during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series Verizon 200 at the Brickyard at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on August 12, 2023 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

Everyone knows auto racing can be a dangerous sport, but in Kevin Harvick’s case, it was a staircase that did the damage.

During NASCAR’s off week in June, Kevin Harvick accompanied his son Keelan to Italy, where Keelan, then 10 years old, was racing go-karts.

“I fell down a flight of steps in Italy and had a stack of busted ribs for several weeks,” Harvick acknowledged Saturday to the surprise of the assembled media at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

So Harvick was driving with cracked ribs at Nashville and Chicago without making the news public—a very Earnhardt-like thing to do.

Now in his final season of NASCAR Cup racing, Harvick feels a special fondness for Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where he won three times on the oval.

“My last race on the oval I won, so I feel pretty good about that,” said Harvick, who won the Brickyard 400 in 2003, 2019 and 2020. “It just kind of ended up that way.”