Tony Stewart Explains Why Stewart-Haas Racing Is ‘Digging in Harder’ Despite Solid 2020 NASCAR Season

Published 01/09/2021, 9:50 AM EST
DAYTONA BEACH, FL – FEBRUARY 17: Team owner Tony Stewart stands on the grid during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series 61st Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)


It was an unusual season for Tony Stewart-led Stewart Haas Racing in the 2020 campaign. Their superstar driver Kevin Harvick came close to qualifying for the ‘Championship 4’ race after a stellar regular season, where he won nine races.

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Unfortunately, the dreams of a title win faded away with Harvick’s exit from the playoffs. Understandably, the eventual outcome disappointed the team owner and former Cup Series champion, Tony Stewart.

In an interview, Stewart talked about the win counts from both Harvick and Chase Briscoe. He also highlighted the team’s ethos and spirit ahead of the upcoming 2021 campaign.

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Tony Stewart opens up on unfortunate end to 2020 season for SHR

Stewart stated, “Get to the end of the year, didn’t end up the way we wanted by any means. We had great win counts with Kevin Harvick and Chase Briscoe but couldn’t finish it off at the end of the year.”

“And that was disappointing, I mean you work that hard all season and you have that kind of performance you feel like you’ve got a really good shot and it just didn’t work out. So the good thing about our organization, all that does is make all of us and everybody at the shop mad,” he added.

FONTANA, CA – MARCH 18: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet, talks to his crew chief, Rodney Childers, during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Jonathan Moore/Getty Images)

Apart from Harvick, Chase Briscoe battled in the Xfinity Series and showcased his talents to full effect. Despite his best efforts, however, the 26-year-old fell short at the final hurdle and lost the Xfinity Series title to Austin Cindric.

“When they get mad, we dig harder yet, so you know that’s just kind of the way we’ve always been. Something sets us back, and it seems like everybody just digs in that much harder,” concluded Stewart on the subject.

The team’s drivers to watch out for in the 2021 NASCAR season

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Both Harvick and Briscoe had tremendous win counts in the 2020 campaign. Whilst Harvick notched up nine in the Cup Series, Briscoe also accumulated nine in the Xfinity Series, almost making one wonder how they did not win their respective titles.

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – FEBRUARY 10: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Beer Car2Can Ford, looks on during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Advance Auto Parts Clash at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

That said, both drivers will run for the same team next year following Briscoe’s promotion to the top division. Tony Stewart will hope there are more reasons to celebrate in 2021 than last year.

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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