The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series travels to Talladega Superspeedway for the Aaron’s 499 Dream Weekend. And you aren’t dreaming if you think Clint Bowyer has a shot at visiting victory lane Sunday.
That’s because Bowyer has two wins at the 2.66-mile oval, both coming in October of 2010 and 2011. Also, half of his 16 starts have ended in top-10 runs. And he ranks second only to his team owner Michael Waltrip in fastest laps run at Talladega.
His No. 15 Toyota is outfitted in the PEAK® Antifreeze and Motor Oil colors for the second time this season. The last time was Auto Club Speedway in March where Bowyer was ready to take the lead with less than two laps to go when a tire went down, spoiling his shot at winning.
With an exciting new qualifying system in place that will be televised on Fox at 1 p.m. ET and a record that proves Bowyer knows how to get around the Alabama track, the dream of a good weekend may become a reality.
What will the new qualifying format be like at Talladega?
“I don’t know, it’s going to be hard. You’re going to have to play your cards right because you’re obviously going to have to get back there and have to get a good run on the field and get a good pull, but no more than you do that then that guy’s done. As soon as he does that, he’s not going to help the next guy do it. He’s going to get his lap, he’s selfish and get the heck out of the way and out of danger. That being said, the farther you go along, the less cars there’s going to be and you won’t have a chance to run that big lap. Definitely going to have to pay attention and I would say luck will play a little bit into it as well.”
Crew Chief Brian Pattie on Talladega:
Last time we ran the PEAK Toyota at Fontana we had a shot to win. I expect no less this weekend either. Clint is good at plate tracks. He knows how to see the air and put himself in the right situations. Qualifying is going to be quite interesting too. I think the fans are going to enjoy it. It’s certainly going to be exciting.