No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota driver Clint Bowyer visited victory lane at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the first time in October. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver enjoyed the experience so much he’d like to do it again Sunday after 400-laps around the 1.5-mile track. The tradition and importance of the 600-mile annual Memorial Day weekend race isn’t lost on the 33-year-old Emporia, Kansas native.
CHARLOTTE 600: “The 600 at Charlotte on Memorial Day weekend is a tradition in NASCAR. The folks at Charlotte Motor Speedway do such a great job of honoring our troops - they really do roll out the red carpet for the military. The pre-race demonstration/invasion of the infield is awesome! All that stuff really hits home and it’s great to see. It helps remind us of how lucky we really are to be out here racing cars and all the folks out here enjoying a great weekend at the races - that’s all possible because those young men and women are over there fighting for our freedom and way of life.
“The race itself is a whole other kind of deal. It’s 600 miles long! That’s like getting in my 5-hour ENERGY Toyota and driving from Charlotte Motor Speedway to more than halfway back to Emporia, Kan. That’s crazy! We strap in and race on and on and on and on … then we ask our crew chief how many laps are left and they tell us that we just got to halfway! (laughs). It’s a long day and we have to be sure we are ready for it. We have to hydrate ourselves because it can be grueling inside the car. I joke about how long and grueling this race is, but it’s a huge race to win. It’s the biggest day of racing for the year in motorsports and to win on that day is a very big deal. We won here in the fall and I’d love to do that again this weekend.”