CLINT BOWYER, NO. 33 BB&T CHEVROLET, met with members of the media at Atlanta Motor Speedway and discussed racing at Atlanta Motor Speedway, success of all three Richard Childress Racing teams, return to spoilers and other topics. TALK ABOUT ...
CLINT BOWYER, NO. 33 BB&T CHEVROLET, met with members of the media at Atlanta Motor Speedway and discussed racing at Atlanta Motor Speedway, success of all three Richard Childress Racing teams, return to spoilers and other topics.
TALK ABOUT COMPETITION: "Good things. RCR (Richard Childress Racing) -- we're still doing well. Early in the season, but I'm must excited about the way our season has gotten off. We were a little bit off in Vegas, but nonetheless, another top-10 finish. If you give me any more of these in a row I'd be ecstatic. It's all about consistency this time of year. We need to win races. Jimmie (Johnson) is already two races up on all the competition so definitely need to win races to be able to be in the Chase and be able to compete with him. Nonetheless, I'm confident about the way we've gotten started off with RCR."
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON SAFER BARRIERS NARROWING BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY?: "The racer in you, I liked the two-wide racing. I still thing you'll be able to do it. I don't think it will change much. It is going to narrow it up. It seems like the fans, they like the emotion, they like the beating and banging on each other and having to knock somebody out of the way to pass them. I'm a big fan of the way the surface is right now, I like being able to run side-by-side, being able to race your way around somebody. Bristol has always been one of my favorite race tracks, no matter before they repaved it or after they repaved it. I think our fans will always get their monies worth, no matter how wide or how narrow it is."
WHAT IS IT LIKE FOR YOU TO TRY TO BEAT JIMMIE JOHNSON SEEING THEY HAVEN'T SLOWED DOWN AT ALL?: "Nobody expected them to. You don't win four in a row. I think the naysayers, they can finally go to sleep and rest on that until somebody else knocks them off the pedestal. Somebody is going to and it could be this year. I believe this could be the year that somebody could stop them in the Chase. Competition is getting closer and closer to catching them. Have they won two of the last three, yes. Was one of them, I'm going to say that with one of them there was a little bit of luck involved in that. Nonetheless, when they got up front, they drove away from my teammates and my teammates couldn't run them back down. I feel like the competition is getting closer to the 48 (Johnson). Look at Jeff Gordon that was his race to win. Jimmie took it from him there at the end. The was a difficult situation, nobody wants lead that many laps, you go into that last caution leading that many laps, it doesn't matter what you do, they're going to do the opposite to try to beat you. That's the only way and the only hope they have of beating you. I hated that for Steve (Letarte, Gordon crew chief), he's a good guy and it's just a tough situation. For us at RCR, we're pumped up about the way our season is getting started, we have room to grow and that's what we're excited about. We're just getting started in this thing. We're two down force tracks into this season and I feel like we're still learning and still moving in a positive direction."
IS MARTINSVILLE SPEEDWAY STILL A HOT, STEAMY TRACK WHERE PEOPLE WORRY ABOUT THEIR BRAKES?: "It still is that, but technology has come a long ways. The brakes, we don't have drum brakes anymore. There's 40-thousand dollars worth of brakes on these things. It's incredible what the equipment goes through at a track like that. If you think about the hard braking like what we're talking about, the acceleration and trying to hook them things up and what they do trying to get that heavy of a race car to stop that quick and then take off and accelerate as quick as we're asking it to do, that's asking a lot out of the stuff. Technology has definitely come a long ways, but again, as a short track Martinsville was one of those tracks that I struggled at big time early in my Cup career. The last couple times we've run there, we've run inside the top-10, had a top-five there -- I feel like that's a track where I've improved a lot and hopefully when we go back there I can contend for a win."
DO YOU HAVE ANY FAVORITE MEMORIES FROM THE SPRING RACE AT ATLANTA AND DO YOU THINK THIS TRACK NEEDS TO BE REPAVED?: "You're talking about here in Atlanta? Leave it alone, leave them all alone. I feel like this is an awesome race track, it races well. As a race car driver, you look for multiple groove race tracks and as these tracks age over time, they keep getting better and better. Every time we go back to California and Fontana in my opinion, is one of the best races we've ever had out there this spring. It's been a lot of fun to be able to race on these older race tracks like Atlanta, slipping and sliding around, running high, running low. It's a lot of fun to be able to pass and be able to run all over the surface like that. If you run up on somebody and they're in your groove, you get up on the outside and get down on the white line, run in the middle, wherever it takes to find grip and to get around that guy. You certainly can do that here. Daytona, those potholes that track is getting old, but in my opinion, that track is because of its age, still races better than Talladega. Again, slipping and sliding around out there, we had all of our cars and as a fan, everybody's favorite driver, with the exception of just one or two was up there racing for the win at the end and had a chance at winning the Daytona 500. Whereas with Talladega, until it ages a little bit and we're separated out a little bit, we're running so close together right there that one little slip up on anybody's part and it wrecks the whole field and you have 12 of your favorite drivers racing for the win. Daytona, it was pretty cool to be able to .have the whole field have a shot at winning the Daytona 500."
DO YOU KNOW WHAT AFFECT THE SPOILERS WILL HAVE ON YOUR RACE CAR?: "Everybody is looking forward to that and everybody is working hard towards that. I don't think anybody knows exactly what its going to do yet. Yeah, we've tested with the spoiler. By yourself, its hard to tell, but when we get out there racing I think some of the things that we used to see bring out cautions and bunch us back up and ultimately make us race side-by-side and race hard are going to happen again. You see and remember the spoiler days, you would get loose under somebody, they would suck you around and you crash and a caution comes out and bunches us all back up and we're all back racing hard. Now that the double-file restarts are in effect, I think it's just going to be more important and bring more of that racing back to the fans and that's what it's all about."
-source: gm racing