05/07/10 If Kevin Harvick is close to signing a contract extension to remain with Richard Childress Racing, it wasn't foremost on his mind after qualifying for Saturday night's Showtime Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.
"I'm not worried about that," Harvick said Friday when asked about possible negotiations. "I'm worried about Darlington."
“We've been talking. Hopefully we'll have something together here in a week or so." Earlier in the day, Childress said ongoing negotiations between the two sides have resulted in what could be a deal to keep Harvick in the RCR fold, at least for the foreseeable future. The team owner expects something to be finalized before the end of the month.
A contract extension would heal the apparent rift that grew between Harvick and Childress in recent months. Last fall, Harvick said "I'm ready to turn the page" when asked about his relationship with the team.
"We've been talking," Childress said. "Hopefully we'll have something together here in a week or so. … It's good for RCR and Kevin and all of us that we can put this back together."
According to Childress, the team's improving competitiveness was a major factor in Harvick's decision to stay where he's been since he was named to replace Dale Earnhardt in 2001. During that time, Harvick has won 12 races in NASCAR's premiere series — including two weeks ago at Talladega — and leads the point standings.
"Probably," Childress said. "We've been performing better."