September 2, 2012
Clint Bowyer Atlanta
Clint Bowyer Race Summary: No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota driver Clint Bowyer finished 27th in Sunday night’s 500-mile NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway. He joined teammate Martin Truex Jr. in clinching Michael Waltrip Racing’s first berths in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Bowyer started 28th but moved to 42nd after changing an engine before the race. It didn’t take long for the 5-hour team to show it brought a fast car to Atlanta. Bowyer moved to the top-10 by lap 63 and appeared set to battle for the victory. But a lap-183 stop to change a battery cost him three laps in the pits taking away his chance to contend. The team persevered and finished four laps down in 27th. Bowyer and the 5-hour ENERGY team return to action on Saturday night at Richmond International Raceway.
After Saturday’s Richmond race, the 12-driver Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field will be set. The top 10 in points will earn Chase berths, as will the Wild Cards – the two drivers outside the top 10 with the most wins. All 12 drivers will have their points reset to 2,000, but only those in the top 10 will have three points added to their total for each win during the first 26 races. Those points totals will set the Chase seeds. Ties will be broken per the rule book (number of wins, then seconds, then thirds, etc.). The two Wild Cards will automatically be seeded 11th and 12th. The 10-race Chase begins Sept. 16 in Chicago and ends Nov. 18 in Homestead, Fla.
- Started 28th and finished 27th
- Clinched a berth in the 2012 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup
- Dropped to the rear of the field on pace laps because of a pre-race engine change.
- Raced into the top 10 in 63 laps.
- Lost three laps in the pits to change the batter around lap 183.
BOWYER: “Man that was a disappointing finish because we had such a great car tonight. I’m bummed we had to change the battery. That just killed us. The 5-hour car was stout. I’m proud of earning the spot in the Chase. That’s something everyone connected with MWR should be proud of. There will be plenty of time to celebrate. But I want to go to Richmond now and win that thing. We have a chance for some great things the rest of the way.”
View the Atlanta Recap Video on Michael Waltrip Racing
View photos from the race >