BUSCH: Darlington: Clint Bowyer preview

CLINT BOWYER Bowyer Looking Forward to Darlington Huntersville, N.C. (May 3, 2005) -- This weekend while the NASCAR Busch Series circuit unfolds at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway for Friday night's running of the Diamond Hill Plywood 200, ACDelco...

Bowyer Looking Forward to Darlington

Huntersville, N.C. (May 3, 2005) -- This weekend while the NASCAR Busch Series circuit unfolds at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway for Friday night's running of the Diamond Hill Plywood 200, ACDelco driver Clint Bowyer can't help but think back to his days on the Midwest dirt tracks to get him around NASCAR's most unique 1.366-mile oval.

"I went there for the first time last year and to be honest, it was a little intimidating," says Bowyer. "I think it is one the hardest and most unique racetracks on the circuit. It kind of reminds me of my days on the dirt tracks, where you are sliding up towards the wall and the car finally catches right before you hit the wall and off you go. For a split second, you slide in and then you have to use a lot of throttle control off the corner. It is real fun and I am really looking forward to going back."

The dirt tracks, after all are where Bowyer's racing career got started. The Emporia, Kan., native first took to the dirt at the age of five racing motocross and then found himself resting on four-wheels in NASCAR's Weekly Racing Dirt Modified division by the time he was 16. When it was all said and done, Bowyer accumulated four Dirt Modified division championships.

"Last year when I ran the No. 33 Chevrolet for Kevin Harvick, Inc., we had a good car. It was a decent run for me, especially for my first time. I got what I needed to get out of it. I didn't go there to test, and obviously going there without any seat time is really hard. It is hard enough even if you have a lot of experience. I ended up 15th and ran all the laps and really learned a lot."

The combination of Bowyer's dirt track experience and his seat time last year at the "Track Too Tough To Tame" may make for the perfect set-up under the lights this Friday. Look for the No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet and Bowyer to be running up front and continuing their quest for a NASCAR Busch Series championship.

Points of Interest...

* Runnin' It...The Real Car Guys will take chassis No. 043 to Darlington (S.C.) Raceway this weekend. This is the same chassis Bowyer drove in April to a 13th place finish at Bristol Motor Speedway after starting third.

* Track Stat...Bowyer's only start at the "Track Too Tough To Tame" took place last year in the No. 33 Chevrolet owned by Kevin Harvick, Inc. He started 31st and finished 15th.

* NBS Points...After 10 races in the 2005 season, Bowyer sits second in points, with two top-five and five top-10 finishes. Despite the three wrecks he was involved in last weekend at Talladega, Ala., Bowyer managed to jump one spot and take over second place. Bowyer now sits 147 markers out of first.

* Dependability...Real Car Guys know ACDelco because ACDelco means dependability. In NASCAR, when you think of dependability, you think of the No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet. The No. 2 ACDelco Chevrolet's DNF last weekend at Talladega was the first since Johnny Sauter's accident at Richmond International Raceway on September 6, 2002. Now that is dependability.

* Start time...Friday night's Diamond Hill Plywood 200 is scheduled for 8:05 p.m. EDT. TV coverage of the 147-lap event on FX begins at 7:30 pm., with live radio coverage also beginning at 7:30 p.m. EDT on your local MRN Radio affiliate and on XM Satellite Radio -- channel 144. Remember times and dates of the race may change so check your local listings.

No. 2 ACDelco driver Clint Bowyer on Darlington Raceway...

What are your thoughts on taking over second place in the points after the weekend you had in Talladega?

"Bottom line is that you can't be too greedy. It seemed like everybody had trouble and if you didn't have trouble, it was a huge gain for you. But I am highly disappointed with the whole deal. I thought we were in the clear when I was running up front and trying to stay out of trouble when trouble found us. You don't get that many opportunities to make up points like that and have things like that fall in your lap very often. Martin Truex, Jr. won the race and gained a whole lot of points on us. It was a three man battle these first nine races, but now it has opened the door to him as well. It is still early in the season, but you have got to take every week like it is your last and get every point you can possibly get out of it."

Did you receive a Darlington stripe last year?

"Which time? In practice, qualifying, or the race? At that place it seems like every lap you are going to get a Darlington stripe, and when you do it is usually big. Last year for me it always seemed to come close on my better laps. The bottom line is that you know there is a good chance of it happening and you just have to be on top of your game every lap because when it does happen, you better be ready to regain control."


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Drivers Kevin Harvick , Johnny Sauter , Martin Truex Jr. , Clint Bowyer