McDowell roars to repeat win ARCA rookie scores second-straight victory with win at Pocono LONG POND, PA (August 4, 2007) - With all of the bad luck Michael McDowell encountered in the beginning of the season, one would figure that his luck...
McDowell roars to repeat win
ARCA rookie scores second-straight victory with win at Pocono
LONG POND, PA (August 4, 2007) - With all of the bad luck Michael McDowell encountered in the beginning of the season, one would figure that his luck would have to eventually balance out. Saturday, that theory proved correct.
Jeremy Clements' misfortune was Michael McDowell's gain as McDowell led the last 200 yards of the ARCA RE/MAX Series' Pennsylvania 200 to capture his second career series victory. Clements, who led 33 laps on the day, ran out of fuel while leading on the white flag lap. McDowell had just finished passing Eddie Sharp Racing teammate Josh Wise for second place when Clements waved his hand out the window, signaling that he was out of gas.
When Clements ran out, McDowell mashed the throttle for more.
McDowell's win comes in a repeat performance following his first career victory last July at Kentucky Speedway. The Arizona native added to his win column in a race filled with five NASCAR development drivers and one former NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion.
While the win came as a last-second surprise, McDowell was stellar the entire weekend, pacing the Saturday afternoon practice session and qualifying his No. 2 Z-Line Designs / Make-A-Wish / Beck Dodge on the outside of the second row. He knew he had something special in the making:
"I can't believe it," laughed McDowell. "I hate it for Jeremy Clements because he really did drive a fantastic race, but I'm thrilled for ESR, Z-Line Designs, Make-A-Wish, Beck Dodge, and Mission Residential. We've suffered enough bad luck this year, but this one-we put ourselves in position to run well, and it definitely worked out in our favor."
McDowell fought to earn the clean pass on Wise, who earned a runner-up finish for Eddie Sharp Racing. It wasn't the "winning pass," but it proved to be just as pivotal:
"That last re-start meant everything. Josh (Wise) is a tremendous driver and mix that with running side-by- side on the tunnel turn at Pocono and you've got a difficult passing situation. There was nothing easy about it. It cost us a left front tire. If there had been one more lap, we wouldn't have made it."
The victory puts McDowell within 20 points of series point leader Frank Kimmel. With nine races left on the 2007 ARCA schedule, McDowell feels confident that he and Eddie Sharp Racing can catch the eight-time champion:
"Momentum is the difference-maker. Everyone in the shop is focused, there isn't a weak track for ESR, this it-this is our year. Frank (Kimmel) is going to do as well as he always does; so, we just need to do everything correctly on our part. Today was huge and certainly a giant step towards the title."
Up Next: McDowell and Eddie Sharp Racing travel to Lebanon, Tennessee's Nashville Superspeedway on Saturday, August 11. McDowell unofficially turned the quickest lap in an open test at the track two weeks ago.