WATCH: Kevin Harvick’s Car Bursts into Flames During Stage 3 of Cook Out Southern 500

by Dustin Schutte

Kevin Harvick’s night in Darlington ended in scary fashion. In the final stage of the Cook Out Southern 500, the longtime NASCAR driver’s car burst into flames. The incident unfolded on Lap 274, less than 100 laps remaining.

Harvick was running in 16th place at Darlington when his car caught fire. For a brief period, the interior of the No. 4 car filled with smoke, creating an inferno-like scene from the track.

Shortly after the fire broke out from beneath, Harvick got his car stopped and safely emerged from the car. Below are some images from the scary scene at Darlington:

Harvick punched his ticket to the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs late in the year with some strong performances at Michigan International Speedway and Richmond Raceway. Harvick took the checkered flag in back-to-back weeks (Aug. 7 and Aug. 14) to secure his spot in the field.

Unfortunately for the No. 4 team, his night ended prematurely in Darlington.

Kevin Harvick Blasts NASCAR After Fiery Exit

Kevin Harvick was not a happy man on Sunday night after exiting the Cook Out Southern 500 due to the fireball. The No. 4 driver said this is another sign of a major issue the league faces.

“I’m sure it’s just the crappy parts on the racecar, like we’ve seen so many times,” a furious Harvick said. “We haven’t fixed anything. It’s kinda like the safety stuff, we just let it keep going. … The car started burning and as it burned the flames started coming through the dash. I ran a couple laps and then — as the flame got bigger, the fire was coming through the dash.

“What a disaster, man. No reason. We didn’t touch the wall, we didn’t touch a car and we’re in the pits with a burned-up car and can’t finish the race during the playoffs because of crappy-ass parts.”

There’s no question Harvick was frustrated after that scary scene unfolded. It’ll be interesting to see how NASCAR responds to the driver’s criticism.