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NASCAR Official Has Fired Back At Kevin Harvick's Remarks

NASCAR driver Kevin Harvick

BRISTOL, TENNESSEE - APRIL 15: Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch Latte Ford, drives during first practice for the NASCAR Cup Series Food City Dirt Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on April 15, 2022 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

A NASCAR executive once again defended the sport against criticism of its Next Gen vehicles from Kevin Harvick.

Earlier this month, Harvick condemned "crappy-ass parts" after his car caught fire at the Southern 500 on Sept, 4. He began selling shirts with that phrase after his left front tire fell off during Saturday night's race at Bristol.

On Tuesday, NASCAR senior vice president Scott Miller addressed ongoing safety concerns during an interview on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (h/t NBC Sports).

“Bristol is definitely a unique load case,” Miller said. “Some things cropped up with the steering that weren’t expected ... It’s not acceptable to have problems, but it’s probably part of the learning process for us.

“All the teams and OEMs (manufacturers) were involved in the RFP process when we chose the parts. Everybody’s got a stake in this, and it’s not just NASCAR choosing quote-unquote, crappy parts."

Miller then acknowledged the current state of the vehicle as the Cup Series playoffs continue.

"With every part of this car actually being a new part and a new design, I think historically in racing, and in any walk of life, when you do something completely new with a departure, there’s a learning curve," Miller added. "We’re in that learning curve and working really hard to make sure that everything works. I think for the most part it has."

When asked by FOX Sports' Bob Pockrass what he needed to advance in the playoffs after the Bristol race, Harvick replied "wheels to stay on." 

He's not the only one with a gripe. Kyle Busch's playoff run ended because of an engine failure. Martin Truex Jr. echoed Harvick's "crappy parts" line after enduring steering issues.

Miller reiterated that the incidents at Bristol were "not acceptable" and they "will diligently work to come up with a solution to where that doesn’t happen again."