Tall order: Bowyer's first series race at Michigan key in catching Truex Jr. DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (August 16, 2005) -- Clint Bowyer has yet to tackle Michigan International Speedway as a NASCAR Busch Series competitor, but don't expect that to...
Tall order: Bowyer's first series race at Michigan key in catching Truex Jr.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (August 16, 2005) -- Clint Bowyer has yet to tackle Michigan International Speedway as a NASCAR Busch Series competitor, but don't expect that to slow him down.
Bowyer, who drives the No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet, has an average finish of 11.7 at the 10 NASCAR Busch Series tracks he has seen for the first time this season, including a 15th-place finish at Watkins Glen last Saturday. The outing was considered a success considering Bowyer, currently second in the series point standings, started 41st.
"I am just glad this is over and we got out of here fairly unharmed all things considered," said Bowyer after the race. "We didn't loose as many points on [Martin] Truex [Jr.] as we could have which was all we were looking for here."
Truex, driver of the No. 8 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, gained 37 points on Bowyer thanks to his fifth-place finish at The Glen. The defending NASCAR Busch Series champion now holds a 122-point advantage in the title standings over Bowyer heading to Michigan.
Last year, Truex and Kyle Busch were making their first series appearances at Michigan. Truex finished third, but saw his championship points lead dwindle as Busch was making what would be his final charge of the season. Busch's win at Michigan moved him to within 98 points of Truex, and he would close the gap to only 78 points the following week at Bristol.
Bowyer hopes to find himself in the same situation following Saturday's race.
The 26-year-old from Emporia, Kan., has finished higher than Truex four times this year on tracks he has seen for the first time in his series career, so the precedent isn't a new one.
Meanwhile, Raybestos Rookie Reed Sorenson (No. 41 Discount Tire Co. Dodge) must regroup quickly if he is to stay close to Truex and Bowyer in the rankings.
Sorenson suffered the worst finish of his brief NASCAR Busch Series career at Watkins Glen when his engine expired on Lap 41, resulting in a 41st-place finish.
Although still third in the standings, Sorenson fell 219 points behind Truex and 97 points behind Bowyer, significantly stalling his effort to become the first rookie to win the NASCAR Busch Series championship.