Daytona 500: Bowyer Friday media visit

CLINT BOWYER, DRIVER OF THE NO. 07 JACK DANIELS IMPALA SS MET WITH MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA FRIDAY and talked about starting in the rear for Sunday, track conditions, what it means to race in the 50th running of the Daytona 500 and more. ON NOT...

CLINT BOWYER, DRIVER OF THE NO. 07 JACK DANIELS IMPALA SS MET WITH MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA FRIDAY and talked about starting in the rear for Sunday, track conditions, what it means to race in the 50th running of the Daytona 500 and more.

ON NOT RUNNING PRACTICE TODAY: "I'm just going to sit this one out. We don't want to put too many miles on our 500 motor. Just going to sit it out and watch what goes on, try to learn a little bit. Really happy with the way my car handles. You know we blew up that motor in practice and the back-up motor wasn't exactly what we all wanted. It really isn't a big deal. We've got a lot of practice tomorrow and I'm not worried about it at all."

WHAT DID YOU LEARN YESTERDAY THAT MIGHT BE INCORPORATED INTO SUNDAY? "I feel like we handled really well with the Jack Daniels Chevrolet. You know come Sunday, that's what you're going to have to do. Like I say, we don't want to mile up our 500 motor too much and I've got 100% confidence that one is going to be a bullet so I'm excited."

ON STARTING THE RACE AT THE REAR OF THE FIELD: "I started in the back and finished upside down last year. (Laughs) No, my teammate Kevin Harvick started in the back last year and won the race. That's what's neat about this race; you can manipulate a lot of different things about this race. It can be won with not the fastest car out there. It's a lot of fun to be able to race and draft at this place and I'm looking forward to Sunday's race and everything that is ahead of us."

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE CAR FOR SUNDAY? "I'm excited. I feel like we really have a handle on our car. I feel like it's handling well. When we get that 500 bullet in there, I feel like we'll be a force to be reckoned with."

WHAT'S THE ONE MAJOR DIFFERENCE YOU SEE IN RACING THE CAR OF TOMORROW? "Just the travels, the bumps and the swells are a lot more harsh and you feel them a lot more. It's the same for everybody. Everybody has been given the same kind of guidelines and you have to make the best of your resources and make your car handle better than the next guy."

ON STEWART'S COMMENTS THAT THE RCR CARS LOOKED REALLY STOUT FOR THE 500: "I feel like us and the Jack Daniels car we are a little bit behind, but like I said I've got new faith in things that are coming motor wise for the 500. I know that our engine guys are the best in the business and they're going to have us good steam come race time when it really counts. They always seem to pull out and we run well down here so I'm optimistic and looking forward to running the race."

WHAT BROKE IN THAT MOTOR? "I don't really know. I just know that no more power."

ON THE IMPACT DALE EARNHARDT, JR. HAS NOW THAT HE'S WON AGAIN: "I guess he learned how to drive again, didn't he? (Laughs) Forgot how to drive for two years, but I guess it's good. Like I say, we just worry about what we worry about and I don't really care what he's doing."

ON EXPECTATIONS FOR THE DAYTONA 500: "I'm optimistic. I'm looking forward to Sunday's race and what's ahead of us. I really think that we can still win this race given the right circumstances. In the right situation anybody can win this race, so I'm looking forward to what's ahead of us in Sunday's race."

SO YOU'RE NOT LOOKING AT IT AS A SET BACK AT ALL, JUST A LITTLE HURDLE? "We always run better with a little bit of adversity and this is a little bit of an obstacle to overcome and we always have overcome a lot of things and this isn't going to slow us down one bit."

YOU TALK ABOUT YOU ALWAYS HAVE THAT LITTLE ADVERSITY, THAT HICCUP. IS THIS THE HICCUP? LOOKING NOW IS IT SMOOTH SAILING ALL THE WAY THROUGH? "Everybody knows this place, anything can happen."

HOW'S THE TRACK FEELING NOW? SOME OF THE GUYS WERE SAYING IT'S REAL SLICK BUT THEY WERE HOPING AFTER TONIGHT'S RACE AND TOMORROW'S RACE THERE WILL BE ENOUGH RUBBER COMING INTO TURNS THREE AND FOUR

"It just seems like as we continue through Speedweeks and every time we come down here it gets slicker and slicker. I don't think it's going to gain grip, I think it is just going to keep on getting worse. Come Sunday and 500 time, the cars that handle are going to be the ones that prevail at the end of the race."

ON THE FACT THAT THIS IS THE 50TH RUNNING OF THE DAYTONA 500 THIS YEAR, DOES IT MAKE IT ANY MORE SPECIAL TO BE IN IT: "Absolutely, just to be a part of the Daytona 500 it's a dream come true for me personally and my family and what we've been able to accomplish in my career. It spells out NASCAR. Daytona is what NASCAR is all about and it's certainly a lot of fun to be a part of."

DO YOU EVER LOOK BACK OR DO YOU JUST LOOK AHEAD? "You never look backwards. If you're looking backwards you're going to be behind. We're looking ahead and looking forward to the 500."

-credit: gm racing

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Series NASCAR Cup