Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Clint Bowyer enduring tough season in Sprint Cup

Clint Bowyer is 27th in Sprint Cup points after 10 races.

Clint Bowyer is 27th in Sprint Cup points after 10 races.

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Kansas native Clint Bowyer is a busy man this weekend at Kansas Speedway.

On Friday night he jumped into a one-off ride in the NASCAR truck series race with GMS Racing. Tonight he will run in his regular HScott Motorsports ride in the Gobowling 400 Sprint Cup race. On Sunday he will give ride-alongs to fans who bought a car from his dealership.

In other words, Bowyer is too busy to ruminate on how rocky this season has been.

In a bridge year between Michael Waltrip Racing and taking over Tony Stewart's ride next year, Bowyer has twice blown up at his team on the radio, labored to get his No. 15 car anywhere near contention, and even brought his own considerable ability into question.

"I think everybody knows me, whether I'm frustrated or happy or whatever … the wick is pretty short. It burns out in about five minutes," Bowyer said Thursday. "The next thing out of my mouth is, 'All right, what are we going to do to fix it?' "

Bowyer is accustomed to being in the best equipment, whether it was the past few years with Waltrip, whose team folded after last season, or his early years with Richard Childress Racing. And Bowyer knew there would be growing pains when he joined Harry Scott's smaller operation for this season.

But he admits he wasn't prepared for the enormity of the challenge.

This season Bowyer, 36, has two top-10 finishes and no top-fives in 10 races. He's 27th in points, a big drop for a driver who finished second in points as recently as 2012.

"When you're down, most of the time there's a reason you're down, especially when you're as far down as we are down," Bowyer said. "(But) we've got some good things coming that I'm excited about."

Qualifying: Martin Truex starts on the pole in tonight's Sprint Cup race at Kansas after turning a lap of 190.921 mph in the final round of qualifying on the 11/2-mile track. Matt Kenseth qualified second at 190.564 mph. Denny Hamlin was third, followed by Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski. Tampa's Aric Almirola (188.390 mph) lines up 19th.

Schedule tweaks: NASCAR has decided that unpredictable Talladega Superspeedway won't be an elimination race in next year's title race, instead taking the pivotal event to Kansas Speedway. The tracks swapped dates in the most significant change to the 2017 schedule. The past two years, Talladega was the third race in the second round of the Chase for the Championship. Talladega becomes the second race in the Chase's second stage on Oct. 15. Kansas moves to Oct. 22 (complete schedule, below).

All-Star Alteration: NASCAR announced a new format for the All-Star race at Charlotte on May 21. It will feature two 50-lap segments, then a 13-lap shootout in which a portion of the field will be on fresh tires. A random draw will decide whether the first nine, 10 or 11 cars will have to do a mandatory four-tire stop before the final segment.

Sprint Cup points

Through 10 of 36 races. The top 16 drivers, based on wins then points, make the 10-race Chase for the Championship.

Driver Pts Back

Kevin Harvick* 351—

Kyle Busch** 342 9

Carl Edwards** 337 14

Jimmie Johnson** 329 22

Joey Logano 316 35

Kurt Busch 312 39

Brad Keselowski** 300 51

Dale Earnhardt Jr. 279 72

Martin Truex 274 77

Austin Dillon 272 79

* Wins


Gobowling 400, 7:30, Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, Kan. TV/radio: FS1; 102.5-FM

Clint Bowyer enduring tough season in Sprint Cup 05/06/16 [Last modified: Friday, May 6, 2016 10:03pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Life sentence for man convicted in killing of brother of Bucs' Kwon Alexander


    An Alabama man who shot and killed the 17-year-old brother of Bucs linebacker Kwon Alexander in 2015 was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday, the Anniston (Ala.) Star reported.

  2. Rays journal: Black Snell continues roll with another win (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was still a game in the fifth inning when LHP Blake Snell walked the leadoff batter, then allowed a single. One swing by Cubs LF Ian Happ (22 home runs) could put a dent in the Rays' three-run lead.

    Blake Snell allows just two hits in going seven scoreless innings.
  3. Remember him? Numbers prove Ben Zobrist is one of greatest Rays of all time

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The first foray back to the Trop by the best manager the Rays have had obscured the second return visit by arguably the second-best player in franchise history.


    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) takes the field to start the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017.
  4. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Wednesday's Rays-Cubs game

    The Heater

    One success story of this lost season is the emergence of LHP Blake Snell as the frontline starter the Rays projected. After a rough start and two demotions, he has been rolling, Wednesday's solid seven innings making him 4-0, 2.57 in his past eight starts.

  5. Rays at Orioles, 7:05 p.m. Thursday, Camden Yards, Baltimore

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Orioles

    7:05, Camden Yards, Baltimore

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM; 680-AM (Spanish)

    Probable pitchers

    This is a 2017 photo of Matt Andriese of the Tampa Bay Rays baseball team. This image reflects the 2017 active roster as of Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017 when this image was taken. (AP Photo/David Goldman)