Taking the Checker: Sonoma

Photo- Getty Images

Clint Bowyer took his No.15 5-Hour Energy Toyota to victory lane on Sunday at Sonoma for his first win of the season and his  first win with his new team. Bowyer also gave Michael Waltrip Racing(MWR) to their first win of the season. It was Bowyer’s sixth win of his career and Michael Waltrip Racing’s third, their first two were with David Reutimann.

The big question after about seven or eight races this year wasn’t whether they would win this year,it was which MWR driver would win first. Bowyer was at the bottom of that list with Martin Truex, Jr and Mark Martin topping it. The real question certainly is not, how many more wins will Bowyer and Michael Waltrip Racing get this year, it’s got to be, “who is the one bigger for? MWR or Clint Bowyer?”

A lot of people thought when Clint made the move to MWR from Richard Childress Racing this year it would virtually end his career. A lot of people didn’t think the team had enough speed to keep up with the better teams such as Richard Childress Racing, Joe Gibbs Racing, Penske Racing and Hendrick Motorsports. Clint has clearly proven all these people wrong with the win. The win on Sunday also proved they have a strong program and not just on the intermediate tracks ,that Truex and Bowyer have both excelled on this year or even the superspeedway’s that Michael Waltrip always excels on, but the road courses too.

The win on Sunday puts Bowyer inside the top ten in points, he is in the seventh positon. The current points position should make him feel pretty confident on a Chase position and could even make him a Chase contender come September. How will Bowyer fair at Kentucky? In this race last year, Bowyer wrecked out and he finished 35th. That is Bowyer’s only Cup start on the speedway but with his experience and performance on intermediate tracks,the other drivers should think of him as a serious contender.

By Tyson Lautenschlager


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