RACING MILESTONES

August 2004

     

     Kevin Harvick is a fierce competitor on the NEXTEL Cup and Busch circuits. You don't want to go up against him in his gameroom, either. Kevin's collection is comprised of the games of his youth and the modern, multi-player sports games. And he's master of them all.
Racing Milestones takes you on a quick tour.


RM:
What got you started collecting video games?

KH:I've always been a video game nut. I always used to go to the local pizza place to play Super Sprint and pinball and anything else they brought in. I just grew up messing around with video games, and I thought it was pretty cool to have my own little arcade with a lot of the games I used to play.


RM:
What was your first purchase?

KH: Galaga, probably because I was so bad at it. I always used to get beat by all my friends playing it. Then I bought Super Sprint, because I could beat everybody at Super Sprint. I just acquired the rest through the years.


RM: Is there a game that you want but haven't been able to find?

KH: Hard Drivin'. The front part is like a Ferrari, and you sit in it and shift. That one's really hard to find because they didn't make a lot of parts for it. I guess Atari, at one time, destroyed a lot of the parts to their machines, so there aren't a lot of parts to repair a Hard Drivin'. All of the stuff I want now is pretty new. The Golden Tee game has advanced into a newer and better style game, and it's a lot of fun when you get a group of people together. That'll probably be the next addition we get, a newer Golden Tee.


RM: What does your wife, DeLana, think of your hobby? Does she get into it?

KH: Every once in awhile. When we have Christmas or something, it starts out in the kitchen where everybody's acting like they're having a lot of fun and talking to each other, but the party always winds up in this room with everybody playing video games and hootin' and hollerin' and having a good time. The Daytona machine has become the most popular because it's relatively easy to play and you can play against each other all at the same time. So she enjoys that... that and pinball.


RM: With your hectic schedule and all of the traveling you do, do you get much of a chance to enjoy the games?

KH: Not near as much as I'd like. Most of this stuff gets used a lot in the wintertime when we're home for Christmas and during the off-season. Sometimes we'll have small get-togethers during the season, and sometimes when I get bored or just get to a point where I just need to go sit and do something by myself, I'll come in here and chill out, but that's very rare.


RM: What's your favorite game?

KH: Super Sprint, just because that's the game I grew up playing the most. I spent thousands of dollars dumping quarters into that machine. I like to play the pinball machine, and the Daytona game is fun when you have a group of people.


RM: Did video games play any role in you becoming a race car driver?

KH: A few years ago, I played a lot of the Papyrus NASCAR games, and we spent a lot of time helping them develop the games. Everything was so accurate that you could tell where pit road was and you could learn a lot of other small things about the race track that were in the video games. But when I was growing up, it was games like Super Sprint and Championship Sprint that I loved. Anything that had a steering wheel on it, I would play.


RM: Any ideas on what you'd like to add?

KH: When we get a bigger house, the first thing we'll probably put in there is a basketball machine. Everybody likes to shoot baskets, so we'll buy a regular-height, dual basketball machine. We'll probably have a bowling alley in it, and other than that, it just depends on what's out at the time. If I could find a Hard Drivin' game, I would put that in there. We'll probably get some more pinball machines because everybody likes to play pinball. We'll probably look for a Harley-Davidson or another pinball of that nature.