The No. 99 SchoolTipline.com Toyota Camry, piloted by Alex Bowman, had a strong run in the early going of Sunday’s rain-delayed DuPont Pioneer 250 at Iowa Speedway, but a late-race faux pas left the team with a 22nd-place finish.
Making the first of two trips to the Newton short track during the 2013 season, Bowman and RAB Racing recorded the first and sixth-fastest times in the two scheduled NASCAR Nationwide Series practices leading up to the event. After his qualifying attempt on the .875-mile oval, Bowman posted a speed fast enough to slot into the 15th starting position.
From the drop of the green flag, Bowman steadily advanced towards the front of the field, running as high as ninth. Throughout the 250-lap event Sunday morning at Iowa Speedway, the No. 99 SchoolTipline.com Toyota Camry remained solidly within the Top-15. Lamentably, Bowman got loose under a competitor causing an incident that relegated the rookie to a 22nd place finishing position.
Despite the less-than-desired result, Bowman held steady at 11th in the NASCAR Nationwide Series driver point standings. With 12 races complete, the No. 99 team trails the top 10 by 30 points. Bowman continues to sit at second position in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year points.
“That is definitely not the finish we were looking for and what this RAB Racing team deserved,” said Bowman. “We had a really fast car, which was evident by setting the fastest lap in practice, and running in the top 10 for most of the race. We pitted and made an adjustment to correct a loose condition, and on the restart we were all racing really hard and the car just got loose when it went over the bump in turn one, and I got into the 20 car. On the positive side I’m really excited for the upcoming races because we found a lot of speed at Iowa, and can transfer what we learned to other tracks. Also excited about going to Michigan next week, its a track that I love and in a photo finish, finished second there last year in an ARCA car.”
The next stop for the NASCAR Nationwide Series will be Michigan on Saturday, June 15, 2013.