Clint Bowyer enters Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway (on NBCSN at 3 p.m. ET) 17th in points, 28 behind Matt Kenseth for the final playoff spot in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series points race. To qualify for the postseason, he must either pass Kenseth and hope nobody below him wins, or win himself.
With four races left until the postseason starts, intensity is amped-up at Michigan International Speedway, the 2-mile oval an hour-plus from the birthplace of America’s automotive industry.
“There’s always pressure,” Bowyer said. “There’s pressure in the Daytona 500 to go out there and perform and try to win that race. It’s no different now. You still focus on the task at hand. You focus on unloading a fast racecar, making good downforce, making good horsepower.”
But a fast car that handles well might not be enough. Bowyer and his No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford team will likely take big chances to try to steal a win. “I’m the hunter not the hunted, so it’s a lot of fun to go into this weekend knowing that you’ve got to go out there and chase that guy down, or chase those guys down and hopefully pop off a win here.”
In Bowyer’s 23 series starts at Michigan, he has posted 11 top-10 finishes.