Harvick, RCR appear close to contract extension

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Richard Childress Racing has scheduled a Saturday news conference amid reports Kevin Harvick has signed a contract extension to stay with the team.

Harvick declined Friday to address a report in The Charlotte Observer, which citing sources, said Harvick has agreed to an extension.

"I don't have anything new to report today," Harvick said. "As soon as we get something to report, we'll go ahead and do that. Nothing new to report today."

A team spokesman confirmed that RCR has blocked time Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway for a news conference.

Harvick scolded the media last month for reporting on his contract situation with the aid of anonymous sources.

"If you're going to quote a source, quote their name," he vented. "If they're too chicken to give their name, don't put it in the paper."

He and RCR have been fighting the issue for some time, and team owner Childress was forced several times last season to issue news releases that addressed sourced stories regarding their partnership. Childress angrily denied several times that Harvick, who is vocal when he's unhappy with the team's performance, was trying to leave the team a year before his contract expired.

Harvick has remained consistently silent on the issue, deflecting almost every question asked this season about a potential extension. But his options outside of RCR became limited when Kasey Kahne signed in April to drive for Hendrick Motorsports in 2012.

Because Harvick has a deal with manufacturer General Motors for Kevin Harvick Inc., he's limited to driving for Chevrolet teams. Kahne's decision took Hendrick out of play for Harvick, and potentially Stewart-Haas Racing since that's where Kahne could be stashed during next year's gap season.

Shortly after Kahne's signing, Childress said he thought he'd have a deal completed with the 34-year-old Harvick by the end of this month.

Harvick has 12 career Cup victories, including the 2007 Daytona 500. His victory at Talladega last month snapped a 115-winless streak.

The Talladega victory came the same week that sponsor Shell/Pennzoil was leaving his No. 29 team. RCR has been searching for a replacement under the assumption Harvick will be the driver.

Harvick said Friday he had no update on the sponsorship search for the No. 29 team.