CLINT BOWYER, NO. 33 GENERAL MILLS/CHEERIOS IMPALA SS, met with members of the media at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and discussed the importance of getting off to a good start, Ricky Carmichael's run last week, how not testing has changed how they ...
CLINT BOWYER, NO. 33 GENERAL MILLS/CHEERIOS IMPALA SS, met with members of the media at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and discussed the importance of getting off to a good start, Ricky Carmichael's run last week, how not testing has changed how they approach practice and more.
IF YOU LOOK AT THE STATISTICS YOU KNOW THAT AFTER FOUR RACES LIKE 80 PERCENT OF THE GUYS THAT ARE IN THE TOP-12 STAY THERE SO GETTING OFF TO A GOOD START IS PRETTY IMPORTANT. YOU DON'T HAVE A LOT OF TIME TO NOT FIX WHATEVER WAS WRONG LAST WEEK? "Right and not only do you not have a lot of time you don't have a lot of places to fix that problem. You have to rely on the shaker rig and engineers trying to fix the problem back at the shop instead of going to the race track and working through those problems, testing or anything like that. Especially with a team like ours there's a major sense of urgency with the No. 33 team just for the simple fact that we don't have that communication yet together. We don't have all that goes with that. We're trying to build that but it just takes time and it does certainly hurt when your cars are not exactly where they need to be. Like I say, I'm fully confident that everybody went back and worked hard.
"To be honest with you I was happy that all our cars didn't really run good. That way all of them are forced to re-evaluate their thought process on where they went through California and they'll work together and fix the problem. That usually works out better when they're all working hard and got their heads together."
DID YOU GET TO SPEND MUCH TIME IN RICKY'S (CARMICHAEL) PIT DURING THE TRUCK RACE AND WHAT DO YOU THINK OF HIS EIGHTH-PLACE FINISH? "I was happy for him. Just finishing, he needs to log laps and get seat time. (Kevin) Harvick called me earlier this week and asked me if I would be his driver coach this week. He just needs to log laps, get seat time and finish all the races. He's in good equipment over there. Once he gets the experience he's going to be just fine. He's a hard worker. His work ethic is definitely what I don't think this sport has ever seen. I don't know if all that combines and if they give him time for his talents to catch up with him I think he'll be just fine."
IS HE COMING INTO TOWN FOR THIS RACE TO KIND OF JUST OBSERVE YOU GUYS RUN? "I don't know. I don't think so. I guess his next race is Atlanta I think."
HOW MUCH ATTENTION DO YOU GUYS PAY TO THE SPORTS BOOK ODDS OUT HERE AND DOES IT SURPRISE YOU THAT I'VE SEEN YOU LISTED AT 60 TO ONE ON A COUPLE? "I didn't even look. We'll bet big and win big then, huh? You know we got off to a good start at Daytona. It wasn't catastrophic at California but in my book it might as well have been. Nineteenth is certainly not what I'm used to and certainly not what I'm satisfied running. We still are building that point's base. With some teams that had engine failures, some teams that fell out of the race those are teams that we're going to have to beat to be in the Chase. We've got to continue to do that but we have to move forward. We can't be finishing 19th. If I could rattle off a handful of top-10's here and get that points base established, get the momentum within in the team. Building a new team like this you need that momentum, those good finishes for everybody's pep in the step. Everything goes along with running well. It's easy to run good and it's hard to run bad."
I KNOW IN PRACTICE OBVIOUSLY THE GOAL WAS TO MAKE THE CAR FAST AND FEEL GOOD AND BALANCED AND ALL THOSE TYPES OF THINGS, WITHOUT THE TESTING HOW HAS WHAT YOU'RE TRYING TO ACCOMPLISH IN PRACTICE CHANGED? "It's definitely changed. Last week was even harder. Like I say, we tried some things, some new things we had working on over the off season that we thought was going to be better wasn't better. But we only had one practice session to make it better and you don't have time to regroup and change the whole front end back over. You're talking about a 35 or 40 minutes process changing spindles, changing the whole front end over and you can't afford to do that. You can't afford to lose that down time because then that takes steps to get that program running well. Having that one practice session and not being able to test and things like that the odds are stacked against you. So I'm looking forward to having that little bit of break. If you do have to change over and change something on the front end -- that seems to be the only thing these cars are susceptible to is changes in the front end whether it be bump stops, your spindle packages whatever it be, the front ends really seem to be what's making these cars go, making them go fast. Having that 30 minutes between or whatever it is where you can change over and go down another road if your avenue is not working is crucial not having testing and things like that."
-credit: gm racing