Don O’Neal discusses the workings of Clint Bowyer Racing
There’s two sides to Clint Bowyer. On one side, he’s a full-time driver in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. On the other side, he’s an avid dirt racing fan who happens to own two dirt late model teams that follow the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series tour.
In the NASCAR off-season or off weekends, you might find Clint Bowyer at one of the dirt haulers. Don O’Neal pilots the #5 for Clint Bowyer Racing. Darrell Lanigan is the driver of the #14. It’s one of the rare multiple car operations on the national dirt late model scene.
In 2018, Bowyer and the rest of the Stewart-Haas Racing camp is on fire. They’ve won 5 of 11 races, 4 of which came from Kevin Harvick while Bowyer picked up the win at Martinsville. That streak continued over the weekend at Clint Bowyer finished runner-up to Kevin Harvick at Dover.
How involved is Clint Bowyer with this team?
“Oh, you know, he’s probably at the shop with the team every day he’s home,” Don O’Neal tells RacingNews.co .
Every day? So I guess that would be Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday?
“Oh, I don’t know. He comes there in the mornings and works out. I haven’t been down there for awhile. But, he’s there quite a bit. I do know that.”
When I see Clint Bowyer win on the NASCAR Cup Series level I immediately start thinking about his dirt team. NASCAR wins bring big pay day’s. It’s not just the NASCAR purse, for most teams there’s a sponsorship bonus for wins, consistent top 5 finishes and so on. Bowyer now has three top 5’s and seven top-10’s in the eleven races so far for 2018.
When I saw Clint win at Martinsville I wondered if there was a shiny new machine or maybe a brand new race car coming to the dirt racing program. Or maybe it’s something smaller like momentum, enthusiasm or confidence within the team members.
When he wins, like he did at Martinsville does that in any way trickle down to this team?
“I wish it did but it hasn’t yet,” O’Neal says with a laugh.
“That was awesome to see him win the race. Especially getting to be in the Chase and everything that you need.”
Is there any crossover? Like with Stewart-Haas and Clint Bowyer Racing?
“No. Well, there’s a crew guy or two from Stewart-Haas that comes over and helps us a little bit every now and there. JD and another boy. Other than that, nothing at all.”
This weekend, Clint Bowyer heads to his hometown race track, Kansas Speedway. Don O’Neal sits 7th in the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series standings. O’Neal ran 3rd on the night of this interview at Tazewell Speedway.