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Oct 10, 2012 - 06:40 AM
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2012 Charlotte II: Clint Bowyer NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview
Posted by: newsla on Oct 10, 2012 - 06:34 AM
2012 Charlotte II: Clint Bowyer NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Preview

Clint Bowyer’s No. 15 Pink Lemonade 5-hour ENERGY Toyota returns to Charlotte Motor Speedway for Saturday night’s 500-mile race - the fifth stop in the 10-race Chase for the Sprint Cup.


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Bowyer, who walked a mini-tightrope at the track with Nik Wallenda in August, hopes his race on the 1.5-mile oval will end in victory lane. He isn't the only one who hopes to make it to victory lane at Charlotte.

Wallenda, the world famous tight-rope artist, plans to walk on a cable suspended over 100-feet above ground, from the speedway’s upper deck grandstand to a platform raised above victory lane a part of the track’s pre-race show.

CHARLOTTE: “This race at Charlotte is huge – for everybody. Not just for the drivers, but for the team owner, the crew – this is home for all of them. A win here right in your own back yard – it doesn’t get a whole lot bigger than that.”

MOVING PAST TALLADEGA: “We couldn’t ask for a better season then what we’ve had. Yeah, we stubbed our toe a little bit last week in Talladega, but that is Talladega. I thought I was where I needed to be when I needed to be there and it just didn’t happen this time. With everything that has happened this year we are still in a good spot. We have some ground to make up for a Championship, but we are still in this deal and I plan to be right there at the end.“

CHARLOTTE PRE-RACE EVENT: “What Nik Wallenda (World famous tight rope walker) does is just insane! I watched his Niagara Falls tight rope walk and let me tell you something, that was pretty amazing. The height, the distance – if you look up and see the top of those grandstands at Charlotte Motor Speedway – man, I’m telling you it’s a little bit nerve wracking to get up there and look down over the edge, but can you image standing on a 5/8 inch cable standing in the middle of over 100,000 people just waiting for you to make a mistake and have a bobble. I couldn’t image the pressure and the feeling that goes through your mind to accomplish that. I’m going to look forward to it. That is definitely something to look forward to.

“It’s always really neat to see what they are going to do that Charlotte. Pre-race in my opinion is a big deal. That sets the tone for what’s to come for our fans and I think Charlotte Motor Speedway has always done just a great job creating an electrifying atmosphere for the fans before we put on a show.”

ON CHASE STRATEGY: “We’ve been right up there in terms of consistency knocking out top-10s about as good as anyone and we’ve had some bad luck and some adversity that we’ve had to overcome, but if we can start turning some of those top-10s into top-five and maybe a win or two over the last six races we’ll be there at the end.”

• PINK LEMONADE: Bowyer is racing the No. 15 Pink Lemonade 5-hour ENERGY/Avon Foundation for Women Breast Cancer Crusade Toyota at Charlotte. In 2012, 5-hour ENERGY is donating at least $75,000 to the Avon Foundation for Women Breast Cancer Crusade in connection with its new Pink Lemonade flavor. But that donation can increase a lot. The more Pink Lemonade 5-hour ENERGY sells, the more they will donate. Bowyer will also drive the pink paint scheme in the Kansas and Martinsville races.

• POINT STANDING: Bowyer is fifth in the point standing with 2139 points. Bowyer trails leader Brad Keselowski by 40 points. Bowyer entered the Chase with six bonus points for his wins at Sonoma and Richmond and has gained two bonus points for leading laps at Dover and Talladega. Prior to 2012, the best season any driver in the history of MWR has finished in a season is 16th in the final point standings (David Reutimann, 2009).

• BOWYER AT CHARLOTTE: Bowyer will make his 14th NSCS start at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Saturday night. In his previous 13 starts Bowyer one top-five and three top-10 finishes while leading 86 laps. He finished 13th in May. Bowyer averages a 18th place starting position and finish of 18th.

• BOWYER AT FALL CHARLOTTE: Bowyer scored his only top-five at CMS and two of his three top-10s in the fall race. He has led 83 of his 86 laps at CMS in the fall. He averages a 14th place finish in the fall compared to a 21st place finish in the spring. He averages a 15th place starting spot in the fall compared to a 21st place starting position in the spring.

• CHASSIS NOTES: Primary chassis No. 740 finished 10th at Chicago in its only race of the year. Backup chassis No. 716 raced earlier this season in Las Vegas, Kansas, Charlotte, Kentucky and Indianapolis. Chassis No. 716’s best finish was sixth at Las Vegas.

• 2012 BOWYER vs. CAREER BOWYER: Bowyer has scored two win (Sonoma and Richmond-2), seven top-five and 18 top-10 finishes and is fifth through the 30 races of 2012. In his six previous seasons, Bowyer best ranking through 30 races was third in 2007, most top-five finishes was six in 2010 and most top-10s was 16 in 2010. See side bar for additional comparison.

• MORE ON 2012: Bowyer has led 200 laps – three at Las Vegas, two at Martinsville, one at Michigan, 71 at Sonoma, one at New Hampshire,19 at Michigan, 88 at Richmond, six at Chicago, one at Dover and eight at Talladega. At Sonoma, Bowyer scored his sixth career Cup Series win and his first on a road course. In Richmond Bowyer scored his seventh career Cup Series win and his second at Richmond. He has an average finish of 11.5 and start of 14.0. 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 two wins (Bowyer at Sonoma and Richmond), 20 top-five and 47 top-10 finishes through the 30 races of the season. Four drivers have recorded three or more top-five finishes – Bowyer has seven, Truex Jr. has six, Martin has four and Vickers has three. All five drivers, including Waltrip, have recorded a top-10.

• 900 AND COUNTING: Clint Bowyer led eight laps at Talladega to give MWR’s Toyotas 908 laps led in the 30 Sprint Cup Series races of 2012. Truex Jr. leads the MWR charge with 423 laps led, Bowyer 200, Martin with 133, Vickers 131, and Waltrip with 21.

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