McDowell and ...
McDowell and #00 Champion Mortgage Team Carry Momentum into New Hampshire
LOUDON, N.H. (September 9, 2008) -- Michael McDowell and his #00 Champion Mortgage Toyota team carry momentum into this weekend's Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway following a strong run at Richmond International Raceway (RIR) that was capped off with a top-20 finish where they reclaimed a top-35 spot in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series owner points standings.
"The race at Richmond International Raceway was one of our best runs this season," said McDowell, whose Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) team is now 35th in the owner points standings. "Our pit stops and changes were all great. That's something that makes us confident as a team. It was just a totally different atmosphere when I walked into the shop this week. It's a testament to how hard the MWR guys have been working. All teams are building off the momentum from last weekend. We are all pleased with the progress we made. At one point, we had all cars in the top-five and David Reutimann was able to leave Richmond with a top-10 finish."
McDowell's confidence level can also be attributed to entering the 1.058-mile oval with the same chassis he raced on Sunday at RIR.
"We ran in the top-five for a little while and stayed in the top-15 for quite some time with this car," McDowell said. "Unfortunately, we were in a situation where we had to be careful and conserve the car to get back into the top-35. We had to make sure the car was in tact to take on to New Hampshire. This brand new car made such a huge difference in our performance and we feel good going into this weekend."
After his career-best 20th-place finish at RIR, McDowell is set to improve upon that finish at New Hampshire where he finished 42nd (engine) in June.
"The June race at New Hampshire was one of our better races before we blew up," McDowell said. "I just missed a gear and that's pretty much what happened there. We had a competitive car up until then. Taking this new car has us really optimistic about our chances. We showed last weekend as a race team that we belong racing in this Series. I was really proud of my guys. Our focus this weekend is to go out there and race as hard as we can and be smart. Richmond was one of the first races where we raced in the top-10 and earned a solid finish. That really makes us look forward to New Hampshire."
Live coverage of the Sylvania 300 on Sunday, September 14th airs on ABC at 1 p.m. ET and 1:15 p.m. ET on PRN Radio.