Clint Bowyer, No. 15 5 hour ENERGY Watkins Glen PreviewBy Official Release
RECORD SPEAKS FOR ITSELF AT WATKINS GLEN
CORNELIUS, N.C. – No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota crew chief Brian Pattie circles Watkins Glen on his Sprint Cup Series schedule each year – and with good reason. Pattie has won in all three of NASCAR’s top touring series at the upstate New York road course.
Pattie’s first win at Watkins Glen came in 1999 with Ron Fellows in the No. 87 Bully Hill Vineyards truck in the Camping World Truck Series. He followed that up with back-to-back Nationwide Series wins with Fellows in the No. 87 Bully Hill car in 2000 and 2001. Pattie won in the Sprint Cup Series in 2010 with Juan Pablo Montoya.
Pattie has good reason to look forward to his first visit to the 2.45-mile road course this weekend with Michael Waltrip Racing and driver Clint Bowyer. Bowyer recorded his only win of the season at Sonoma in June – the only other road course the Sprint Cup Series visits. Pattie is taking the same car that won at Sonoma to Watkins Glen.
BRIAN PATTIE ON BOWYER AT WATKINS GLEN: “Clint is a good road course racer – he showed that earlier this year at Sonoma. He tells me that he’s good at Sonoma and he’s not very good at Watkins Glen, but I’m not sure that’s completely accurate. He runs well, but he doesn’t have a lot to show for it.
“I’m looking forward to this weekend. I know it’s going to be a good weekend and the results will be there when the race is over. With five races to go (before the start of the Chase for the Sprint Cup), we’d love to get another win, but we are going in with the expectation of a single digit finish. If we finish (better than 10th) each week, then we have nothing to worry about in terms of the Chase.”
ON WATKINS GLEN: “I love Watkins Glen – it’s my favorite track that we visit each year. I’ve turned more laps there in a rental car then a lot of Cup Series drivers have in race conditions. We used to test there a lot – probably more than anywhere else I’ve tested. I worked with Ron Fellows there in the truck and Nationwide series and learned more from him than anyone else. He showed me what the car needs to do in order to be competitive and that’s helped me a lot throughout my career. I just love road course racing. It’s fun. It’s something a little different than we do each week and it’s always a competitive race. And each road course is completely different. Sonoma is slower speeds and probably closer to setting a car up for Martinsville. Watkins Glen is big and fast. It has longer breaking zones and much higher speeds, so the setups are a lot different. If you bring the same setup that we used to win at Sonoma to Watkins Glen, which would be like taking a car built and setup for Martinsville and trying to use it for Dover. It’s that much different.”
NOTES OF INTEREST
· MEDIA AVAILABILITY: Clint Bowyer will visit the media center at Watkins Glen International Friday at 2:15 p.m.
· CHASE: Bowyer is 10th in the point standings with a 57 point lead compared to 11th place with five races remaining before the start of the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
· IN RACE REPORTER: Bowyer will serve as the ESPN in-race reporter for the race this Sunday at Watkins Glen. ESPN will talk to Bowyer in his car prior to the start of the race and during cautions to get his take on the race.
· DIRT RACING: Bowyer is racing the No. 15 Crawford Supply Camry for Clint Bowyer Racing in the IMCA BMS dirt modified for “Modified Mania” Tuesday night Aug. 7 at RPM Speedway in Hays, Kan.
· MWR CO-OWNER ROB KAUFFMAN: Kauffman and co-driver Rui Aguas will race the AF Waltrip Racing Ferrari in Saturday’s Rolex Sports car race at Watkins Glen International. SPEED-TV will air the two-hour race live at 6 p.m. ET.
· BOWYER AT THE GLEN: Bowyer will make his seventh Sprint Cup Series start at Watkins Glen International on Sunday. In his six previous starts, Bowyer has one top-10 (ninth in 2009). On average he starts 21st and finishes 18th. He finished 11th in 2011 and led his first and only career lap at Watkins Glen.
· HOMETOWN BOY: On Saturday, July 21 Clint Bowyer hosted his Support Emporia 2012 Charity Event at Emporia Municipal Golf Course in Emporia, Kan. The event raised more than $350,000 to benefit the Emporia Community Foundation through Bowyer’s “79 Fund.” Participants played golf and enjoyed dinner, an awards ceremony, live auction and music at the Emporia Municipal Building following the golf tournament.
· CHASSIS NOTES: Primary chassis No. 632 is the same chassis that Bowyer won with at Sonoma in June. He started sixth and led 71 laps in the victory. It previously raced as the No. 47 at Sonoma. Chassis No. 690 is the backup and previously raced as the No. 56 in California and Michigan in 2011.
· 2012 BOWYER vs. CAREER BOWYER: Clint Bowyer has scored one win (Sonoma), four top-five and 11 top-10 finishes and ranks 10th through the first 21 races of 2012. In his six previous seasons, Bowyer best ranking through 21 races was 10th in 2007, most top-five finishes was four in 2008 and 2009, and most top-10s was 11 in 2007 and 2010. See side bar for additional comparison.
· MORE ON 2012: Bowyer has led 78 laps – three at Las Vegas, two at Martinsville, one at Michigan, 71 at Sonoma and one at New Hampshire. At Sonoma, Bowyer scored his sixth career Cup Series win and his first on a road course. He has an average finish of 12.1 and start of 15.1. Bowyer’s best average finish for a season came in 2007 when he averaged a finish of 13.8 and finished third in the final point standings.
· MWR IN 2012: MWR’s five Cup Series drivers have scored a combined record of one win (Bowyer at Sonoma), 13 top-five and 30 top-10 finishes through the first 21 starts of the season. Four of the five drivers have recorded two or more top-five finishes – Truex Jr. has five, Bowyer has four and Mark Martin and Brian Vickers each have two. All five drivers, including Michael Waltrip, have recorded a top-10.
· LEADING THE WAY: MWR’s Toyotas have led 623 laps in the first 19 Sprint Cup Series races of 2012. Martin Truex Jr. leads the MWR charge with 320 laps, followed by Brian Vickers with 125, Martin with 79, Bowyer with 78 and Waltrip with 21.