Clint Bowyer fuming after chaotic qualifying: "It's just stupid"
Clint Bowyer will start Sunday's NASCAR Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway from 25th on the grid and he is not happy about it.
After a controversial qualifying session at Auto Club Speedway with the new aero package, NASCAR responded by introducing new regulations to counter some of the issues. Ultimately, it only led to more.
Drivers were instructed to keep the middle lane open for cars to exit pit road safely and without drama, but Clint Bowyer found his way blocked by Ryan Newman Friday at TMS. There was no penalty levied against Newman, prompting both Bowyer and his crew chief Mike Bugarewicz to debate the decision with NASCAR officials after the round ended.
"Who the hell knows," a frustrated Bowyer told FS1. "They say whatever they want to say. I mean the lesson was supposed to be learned at California when we made ourselves look like idiots out there. Unfortunately, we're standing here again in the same situation.
"I'm pissed off ... been doing this for years and years and years. This is stupid. Did that look like clogging the middle to you? I damn-near had to back up to go. That's not clogging the middle, apparently. We talked about clogging, (it was) our conversation before qualifying. It says really clearly in lawyers terms how you can't clog the middle and I be damned, the first time it clogs the middle they don't call it. Discretionary."
He went on: "Then the next time, you go out there and try to make a lap, the guy wrecks so it puts you in a situation like we had in California -- do I finish this lap or not because that's a rule, you're not supposed to finish a lap (as) the field's frozen, (but) they went ahead and let those guys have it.
"Then you're here venting and pissed off (for) no reason. It's just stupid. But anyway, I'm going to go back and pout and be pissed off. I appreciate you letting me vent on national television Jamie (Little) but this is the second time that we've done this and I've been bit by it and I'm tired of it.
"This is a fail. An epic failure."
Later, he told a separate media scrum, "there's people out there paid a lot of money to bring their families here to watch a qualifying session. People try to go out and do their best, but your best is not good enough if someone's sitting in front of you. That's not qualifying."
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