Bowyer Dominates Sonoma

Bowyer celebrates -Photo via

Clint Bowyer took the checkers at Sonoma Sunday Afternoon after dominating the race. Bowyer ran great all day and held off Kurt Busch and Tony Stewart late in the race to claim victory. This race set records when we went 82 laps caution free. The race ended with only two cautions, a track record.

On lap 12, Jeff Gordon took the lead from pole sitter and race favorite Marcos Ambrose. Bowyer took the lead for the first time on lap 25 when he passed Jeff Gordon. The first round of green-flag pit stops began on lap 33. Martin Truex Jr was on a different pit-cycle than everyone else, therefore he took the lead when he didn’t pit during the lap 33 pit-cycle. On lap 42, Josh Wise ran off track before the hairpin turn he nearly spun around but he didn’t and no caution came out. Halfway through the race we were caution free and Bowyer led followed by; Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch, Jeff Gordon and Kyle Busch.

On lap 57, Bobby Labonte spun around in turn eleven but no caution flag flew. On lap 68, the second round of green-flag pit stops began. Race favorite Marcos Ambrose never returned to the front after so many people thought he would have the dominant car of the day. After this race, Ambrose is still winless at Sonoma. Ambrose ended up finishing eighth. After the second round of pit stops, Clint Bowyer was the leader and he would never give that position up for the rest of the race.

After 82 laps, the first caution flew for Tomy Drissi, in the No.10 car; he spun and crashed while entering the esses portion of the track. While the laps were winding down, Kurt Busch was right up behind Bowyer. Lap after lap Busch was there and he didn’t make a move to get around Bowyer. Eventually Busch made contact with the tire barriers in turn eleven and damaged his car, essentially eliminating his chance of winning. With five laps to go the caution flew for Kyle Busch and Paul Menard. Busch steamed into turn five and made contact with Menard, spinning both cars and bringing out the full course yellow.  This set up a green-white-checker finish.

Bowyer led coming to the restart followed by Kurt Busch, Tony Stewart and Jimmie Johnson. While the first part of the field got up the hill without an issue, the second half had a problem. Another driver got into Earnhardt Jr and spun him out and Earnhardt Jr made contact with Almirola who was trying to avoid the accident. Regan Smith crashed into Earnhardt Jr, causing heavy damage to both cars. The caution never flew for this and the leaders raced towards the white flag. As Bowyer led, Stewart had gotten by Kurt Busch. Back in the pack on the final lap, Martin Truex Jr was having a great day until he spun in turn five and lost a bunch of positions. No caution flew and Bowyer held off a late-charge by Stewart and took the checkers.

This was Bowyer’s first win for Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) since Bowyer came over from Richard Childress Racing this past offseason. This was only the third career win for MWR but it was much celebrated. Bowyer commented on MWR’s success by saying that “MWR is working together.” Kurt Busch was grateful for a great race and said “Glad we brought it home third.” In a unsponsored car, Busch really showed great skills. Busch was the defending winner of this race and for awhile it looked like he was going to win it again.

A great performance by Clint Bowyer put him in victory lane today and Bowyer helped his chase chances a little bit more. Next week the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is off to Kentucky Speedway for a Saturday Night showdown.

Results via










1 15 Clint Bowyer Toyota 5-hour Energy 48/5 112 Running
2 14 Tony Stewart Chevrolet Office Depot / Mobil 1 42/0 112 Running
3 51 Kurt Busch Chevrolet Phoenix Construction Services 42/1 112 Running
4 55 Brian Vickers Toyota RKMotorsCharl
40/0 112 Running
5 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet Lowe’s 39/0 112 Running
6 24 Jeff Gordon Chevrolet Drive to End Hunger 39/1 112 Running
7 16 Greg Biffle Ford 3M / US Stationary 37/0 112 Running
8 9 Marcos Ambrose Ford Stanley 37/1 112 Running
9 22 AJ Allmendinger Dodge Shell / Pennzoil 35/0 112 Running
10 20 Joey Logano Toyota The Home Depot 34/0 112 Running
11 31 Jeff Burton Chevrolet Wheaties 33/0 112 Running
12 2 Brad Keselowski Dodge Miller Lite 32/0 112 Running
13 17 Matt Kenseth Ford Ford EcoBoost 31/0 112 Running
14 5 Kasey Kahne Chevrolet Farmers Insurance 30/0 112 Running
15 13 Casey Mears Ford GEICO 29/0 112 Running
16 29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet Rheem 28/0 112 Running
17 18 Kyle Busch Toyota M&M’s 27/0 112 Running
18 39 Ryan Newman Chevrolet Quicken Loans / Childrens Tumor Foundation 26/0 112 Running
19 1 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet McDonald’s 25/0 112 Running
20 27 Paul Menard Chevrolet Menards / Moen 24/0 112 Running
21 99 Carl Edwards Ford Aflac 23/0 112 Running
22 56 Martin Truex Jr.   Toyota NAPA Auto Parts 23/1 112 Running
23 88 Dale Earnhardt   Jr. Chevrolet Diet Mountain Dew / National Guard / 7-Eleven 21/0 112 Running
24 47 Bobby Labonte Toyota Clorox 20/0 112 Running
25 195 Scott Speed Ford Leavine Family Racing 19/0 112 Running
26 38 David Gilliland Ford 1-800LoanMart 18/0 112 Running
27 34 David Ragan Ford Green 1 High Performance Green 17/0 112 Running
28 43 Aric Almirola Ford Medallion Financial 16/0 110 In Pit
29 32 Boris Said Ford 15/0 110 Running
30 26 Josh Wise * Ford MDS Transport 14/0 110 Running
31 83 Landon Cassill Toyota Burger King / Dr Pepper 13/0 110 Running
32 78 Regan Smith Chevrolet Furniture Row / Farm American 12/0 109 Running
33 249 J.J. Yeley Toyota America Israel Racing / JPO Absorbents 11/0 107 Running
34 42 Juan Montoya Chevrolet Target 10/0 107 Running
35 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota FedEx Ground 9/0 98 Susp.
36 93 Travis Kvapil Toyota Burger King / Dr Pepper 8/0 92 Running
37 36 Dave Blaney Chevrolet Tommy Baldwin Racing 7/0 84 Susp.
38 10 Tomy Drissi Chevrolet Ice Age Continental Drift 6/0 78 Accident
39 7 Robby Gordon Dodge MAPEI / SaveMart Supermarkets 5/0 73 Steering
40 98 David Mayhew Ford Phil Parsons Racing 0 25 Brakes
41 33 Stephen Leicht * Chevrolet Little Joes A
3/0 22 Brakes
42 119 Chris Cook Toyota Humphrey Smith Racing 2/0 13 Brakes
43 87 Joe Nemechek Toyota AM / FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves 0 1 Engine




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