Charlotte II: Clint Bowyer preview

* This Week's Scary Fast Count Chocula Chevrolet at Lowe's Motor Speedway ... Clint Bowyer will pilot Chassis No. 257 from Richard Childress Racing's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable. A former No. 07 chassis, this Chevrolet Impala SS has raced just...

* This Week's Scary Fast Count Chocula Chevrolet at Lowe's Motor Speedway ... Clint Bowyer will pilot Chassis No. 257 from Richard Childress Racing's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series stable. A former No. 07 chassis, this Chevrolet Impala SS has raced just once, at Indianapolis in 2008, where Bowyer finished 19th.

* Charlotte Facts ... In seven NSCS starts at Lowe's Motor Speedway, Bowyer owns one top-five finish. His best showing at the 1.5-mile quad-oval came in October 2007, when the Emporia, Kan., native finished second. Additionally, the 30-year-old driver has led 82 laps of competition, has an average starting position of 22.4, an average finish of 20.9 and has completed 98.3 percent of the laps contested (2,390 of 2,432).

* Through 30 Races ... Over the season's first 30 races, Bowyer has accumulated four top-five and 13 top-10 finishes, an average start of 17.3 and an average finish of 15.8. The two-time NSCS winner has led 40 laps of competition and has completed 8,219 of the 8,553 (96.1 percent) laps contested thus far.

* Rearview Mirror ... Hard work, perseverance, and avoiding a late-race, multi-car incident paid off in the form of a ninth-place finish for Bowyer and the No. 33 team in last Sunday's race at Auto Club Speedway.

* Get to the Points ... Bowyer's ninth-place finish at Auto Club Speedway advanced him one position, to 15th, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings. Out of the Chase field, the race for 13th place is on. Bowyer trails the current position holder, Kyle Busch, by just 64 markers.

* RCR at Charlotte ... In 107 starts at LMS, RCR has earned five points-paying victories. Four of those were won by Dale Earnhardt, while Jeff Burton added to that total with a win in the October 2008 race. Kevin Harvick also recorded an impressive win at the 2007 All-Star Race to go along with Earnhardt's three victories at the annual all-star showcase, giving RCR nine total Sprint Cup Series checkered flags at LMS. Additionally, RCR boasts 19 top-five and 35 top-10 finishes at LMS with seven different drivers including Earnhardt, Ricky Rudd, Mike Skinner, Harvick, Burton and Bowyer. Richard Childress, a former driver on NASCAR's senior circuit, contributed two of those top 10s from 1978-1979.

* The Collective RCR ... In 30 races this season, RCR's four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series entries have notched nine top-five and 28 top-10 finishes. The No. 29 team kicked off the 2009 season with a win in the Budweiser Shootout at Daytona. RCR-prepared cars have also completed 33,299 laps with four different drivers including Burton, Bowyer, Harvick and Casey Mears. RCR teams have led 188 laps and all four teams have earned just shy of $17 million combined purse money in 2009.

* Meet the Driver ... Bowyer will sign autographs at the Cheerios/Hamburger Helper souvenir trailer located in Lowe's Motor Speedway's display area on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 3 p.m. Tickets will be distributed on a first come, first served basis early that morning and will be limited in number due to time constraints.

* Different Look for Car, Driver ... In addition to wearing a Halloween-themed, fan-chosen Count Chocula firesuit, Bowyer will drive a special black and purple Scary Fast No. 33 Count Chocula Chevrolet Impala SS that features the General Mills Monsters cereal characters.

* Homecoming ... Four members of the Cheerios/Hamburger Helper team hail from the greater Charlotte area. Mechanic Scott Brewer calls Winston-Salem his hometown. Vice President of Competition and race day spotter Mike Dillon was born and still resides in Clemmons. Transporter driver Dennis Gammons hails from Greensboro and engine tuner Timmy Petty is from Level Cross.

* Vote for Steve ... Steve Ellis, shop foreman for the No. 33 team, is one of eight finalists for the inaugural NASCAR Wrenchman Award, recognizing the behind-the-scenes NASCAR team members who "turn the wrenches" in the shop and along pit row. Fans can choose the winner by logging onto www.craftsman.com/wrenchman and voting for their favorite team member. By voting, fans will also be automatically entered for a chance to win an all-expenses paid trip for two to the Wrenchman Award Ceremony in Miami on November 22.

* Mark Your Calendars ... In honor of its 40th anniversary, RCR will host a Fan Day at the Welcome, N.C. complex on Thursday, Oct. 22 from 9 a.m. -- 5 p.m. Activities include driver and pit crew autograph sessions, self-guided tours of RCR's Sprint Cup and Nationwide as well as ECR's engine shop, radio remotes, musical entertainment, pit crew competition, viewing of the DALE movie, question-and-answer session with team owner Richard Childress and much more. General admission to RCR's Fan Day is just $5, which will benefit the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma. For more information, or to purchase advance tickets, please visit www.rcrfanday.com.

CLINT BOWYER:

You had a runner-up finish in the fall race a few years back, but your finishes since then haven't been that great.

"Charlotte's a track where I'm hit-or-miss. It's my worst track, by far. I'll either run good, or I'll run horrible. I've had a lot of bad luck there, too. Last year, the second lap of the race, a hot dog wrapper got on the grill and overheated the car. We had to pit, lost two laps in the process and never could get them back. Hopefully, it'll be the hit and not the miss this time around."

David Reutimann was the upset winner in the spring when the race was called early because of rain. What did you think of him getting his first win and how it happened?

"It's a pretty big race to get your first win in, even though it was rain shortened. They've run well and they're getting better as a race team. So, to get their first win was good for them."

Looking back over the last few races at Charlotte, the number of race leaders is going up and there are more lead changes. Is that because the grip is wearing off, or is it because teams are getting a better handle on the new car?

"It's because teams are going for two tires, no tires or fuel only. Pit strategy is playing a pretty big role in that. The track will wear out. It hasn't yet and, until it does, the clean air out front, there more than anywhere right now, is so crucial. You can take off on two tires if you've got clean air. I'd like to see Goodyear come up with a different tire that would hopefully change that. If the caution comes out, you should have to put tires on. You shouldn't be able to do a fuel-only stop, pull away and leave everyone behind."

-credit: rcr

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Jeff Burton , Mike Skinner , Kevin Harvick , Casey Mears , David Reutimann , Clint Bowyer , Kyle Busch